USA news October 22, 2012

Suspended USACA secretary wants treasurer Thickett sacked

ESPNcricinfo staff

The infighting within the USA Cricket Association (USACA) which last week led to the suspension of Kenwyn Williams, the increasingly unpredictable executive secretary, continues with the issuing of an agenda for the forthcoming AGM which includes a motion to remove John Thickett, the treasurer, and to scrap the multi-million dollar deal with Cricket Holdings America (CHA).

The AGM, which is due to be held in Fort Lauderdale on November 10, is already likely to be a lively affair as the board will face questions over Williams' recent conduct and its failure to act swiftly when the problem arose.

While senior board members have now regained control of USACA's social media outlets and are looking at their options to remove Williams from office, he continues to cause them embarrassment.

One of his last acts was to reveal the name of one of the shortlisted candidates for the vacancy as USACA chief executive, announcing that this person had been appointed on a salary of $500,000. ESPN learned from the ICC that the interview process was ongoing and that the salary stated was inaccurate.

Now Williams has circulated an official-looking agenda on USACA headed paper which calls for the removal of Thickett, who was the first to call for his suspension last week, and proposes and motion to "resolve that the CHA LLC agreement be dissolved". CHA is a joint venture formed in 2010 between New Zealand Cricket and the USACA for the development of cricket within the USA, and it aims to launch a professional Twenty20 league in America next year.

While neither motion is likely to succeed - Williams seems to have managed to alienate himself from almost every faction within US cricket - this will be another embarrassment for USACA at the end of a week where quasi-official pronouncements on Facebook and Twitter have left them scrambling to undertake a major damage-limitation exercise.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Sam on October 23, 2012, 4:58 GMT

    I applaud Cricinfo for making this a headline. Journalists have the ability to affect changes. By highlighting this, ESPNCricinfo has played a part in increasing awareness of a problem. USA is hardly a useless small market. If I recall correctly, USA ranks near the very top of the nations that patronize this site based on page hits and this is the undisputed world leader in cricket sites. While cricket hasn't penetrated the US market, the growing number of immigrants from cricket playing nations has opened the chance of cricket gaining traction in USA. Unless one is an isolationist in his/her outlook, increasing the popularity of the game anywhere, especially USA, is hardly a bad thing. Thus, highlighting USACA's problems and the short sighted actions of its officials that can play a part in stunting the growth of the game in USA is a worthwhile journalistic pursuit. KUDOS to Cricinfo's forward thinking editors!

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2012, 0:39 GMT

    I have to agree, this does not belong as a headline. Even as an American, I don't really care.

  • Dummy4 on October 23, 2012, 0:22 GMT

    @Adam_from_Maine, as an American cricket and soccer fan I have to completely disagree with you. Soccer is not unsuccessful in the US. Events like the World Cup gets 5-6 million viewers per game (better than average baseball or basketball ratings). And hundreds of soccer games from a dozen leagues/tourney's are shown on TV every year with decent to good ratings. The sport is growing so fast here that the TV rights fees for all soccer properties went from $50 mil 15 years ago to nearly $2 billion today. All that without having to change the sport slightest bit (i.e. adding commercial breaks or other annoyance). Cricket doesn't need to change a thing either to be nearly as successful here because it already has enough breaks for commercials (more than soccer) and some properties that Americans love in a sport (high scoring, abundance of meaningful statistics, athleticism etc.). All it needs is some investment (in facilities and youth programs) and a competent leadership.

  • Vikram on October 22, 2012, 17:07 GMT

    meh. so there are 11 people in the board, and probably these are the ones who care about American cricket. Couldn't you just update them with an e-mail, instead of this being top news on cricinfo? What's next? The Argentina School Cricket League's stumps were stolen?

  • Punjin on October 22, 2012, 15:21 GMT

    If 34 leagues suspension did not unite Cricketers in USA nothing will. Even AFC failed to gain momentum and support. Only 8 out of 34.. I guess one has Dainty and other has Atul Rai.. both controlling freaks...

    34 leagues need to join hand and take control of USACA.. Fight within and vote out the vested interests.. Dainty, Gail, Thickett, Rafey, chik, charlie- super sixers of USACA need to go... Lone warriors like Bobbie Rafaie, John, Ken will not work..

  • Tim on October 22, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    The news about the USACA is very sad. I have only recently began following cricket and I would like to be an avid follower of a domestic game, but it appears that the USACA is dominated by useless bureaucrats who have no interest in popularizing the game and only want to rake in a huge salary for little effort. What is required for the position of USACA executive secretary is a person with experience in global sports marketing who can build on the successes of other cricket federations and introduce the professional game to a sports-hungry country. ESPN appears to be on board and ready to deliver the product (they actually aired the T20 final on ESPN2, which is amazing to me), but the USACA is too busy infighting to capitalize. Just pathetic.

  • Amit on October 22, 2012, 14:31 GMT

    Nothing good will ever come out under the leadership of Mr. Gladstone Dainty. Mismanagement and infighting are two buzzwords of his leadership style.

  • Dummy4 on October 22, 2012, 14:21 GMT

    After years of the same, I wonder how regulatory bodies, including the ICC, feel about the model of cricket development in the United States. Is it time to abandon this market OR take valid actions that sideline politics, power struggles, and bring cricket to the forefront? ICC's "innocent bystander" approach is only going to amount to more of such articles on Cricinfo.

  • Adam on October 22, 2012, 12:58 GMT

    As an American who loves cricket, I believe the longer this kind of thing keeps the US way out of international cricket, the better. American sports are about marketing, not sportsmanship. We would have the world believe soccer is unsuccessful here because Americans are bored by it; the real reason is there are no commercial breaks. When you attend a live football or baseball game there are stoppages of play dictated by the needs of TV producers, and nothing to do with the game happening in front of you. Corporate America has the potential to do damage to cricket that will make the IPL look like a cat running loose in the outfield.

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