Black Caps legend Martin Crowe has launched a blistering attack on New Zealand Cricket (NZC) administrators following the botched handling of Ross Taylor's axing as captain.
In an emotionally charged column on worldwide cricket website Cricinfo, Crowe - Taylor's batting coach and long-time ally - described the sport's controlling body in New Zealand as "worthless" and said cricket in New Zealand had suffered severe damage.
"Over the last week NZC destroyed the soul of Ross Taylor, easily our best player," Crowe wrote.
"They have apparently apologised for the way his sacking from the captaincy was handled. Nevertheless they have amputated his spirit and there is no prosthetic for that.
"And yet NZC goes unaccountable. They continue to strip the worth from players and, therefore, as an organisation, they have definitely become worthless."
After taking a job as a talent scout for New Zealand Cricket only a month ago, Crowe, himself a former test captain, quit in disgust this past week after the series of events that led Taylor to withdraw from the Black Caps tour to South Africa.
Attempts were made to contact Crowe during the week, but the 77-test veteran chose instead to voice his opinions on the popular website.
Crowe's column took aim at the leadership of chief executive David White, New Zealand Cricket's chairman, and coach Mike Hesson.
"The leadership has been poor in the past, but the fish head couldn't smell any worse now," Crowe wrote.
"From the chairman to the CEO to the coach to the manager, they have all played their collective part in what is arguably the most botched administration in New Zealand sporting history."
Crowe described Taylor, who averaged 49.83 as test captain, a "resilient character" and predicted he would bounce back from the events of the last week.
As for New Zealand Cricket, and those responsible for Taylor's axing, he said they had inflicted "permanent" damage on the New Zealand game, and believes they should go.
"Those who have contributed to this debacle may as well stay on because they have done such a murderous job that the next lot, no matter how good they are, will always be playing catch-up.
"But those directly accountable should go, simply as rightful punishment."
- © Fairfax NZ News
Is cricket still NZ's top summer sport?Related story: Rain can't save Black Caps from big defeat