Moller ends innings, denies he was run out

MARK GEENTY
Last updated 05:00 13/07/2013

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Outgoing New Zealand Cricket board chairman Chris Moller insists he has not been forced out of his role by the John Parker-led campaign for better governance.

Moller confirmed yesterday his three-year tenure as chairman would end in September amid a board cleanout in which Bill Francis, Sir John Hansen and Therese Walsh would also step down.

The former New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive departed without a public comment, aside from a statement which said the chairman's role was time-consuming and it was the right time for a handover with New Zealander Alan Isaac the president of the International Cricket Council.

In his parting address at a special general meeting in Auckland, Moller denied there was external pressure to move on.

"I am compelled to make it crystal and unequivocally clear that I am not stepping down due to the antics of the so-called former international players group," Moller said. "Ironically, I might well have made myself available for election to the board had they not, in cricketing parlance, hit wicket or run themselves out without facing a ball."

Parker led a group of former captains in agitating for change to NZ Cricket's governance and better representation of former internationals on the board. But the campaign flopped and required a legal settlement with current skipper Brendon McCullum and coach Mike Hesson amid allegations about their roles in the dumping of former skipper Ross Taylor.

Moller oversaw a period when the governance of NZ Cricket came under massive public scrutiny, particularly during the Taylor affair. It led to calls for more former international players to offer their knowledge and expertise at board level.

Moller's departure was confirmed after the special general meeting in Auckland to adopt a new constitution.

Eight roles on the board will be advertised, with Stuart Heal, Don Mackinnon and Greg Barclay the only current board members seeking re-election.

The NZ Cricket board members unanimously resolved that they and Moller would remain in their positions until a special general meeting on September 19 to elect the new board.

A board appointments panel, which is headed by NZ Cricket president and former international Stephen Boock, was formed to oversee the selection process of the new board.

The panel includes Auckland chairman Rex Smith, Northern Districts chairman Lachlan Muldowney, Otago chairman Murray Hughes and Sir John Wells, a nominee of Sport New Zealand.

Moller paid tribute to the departing board members.

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Francis, a former general manager of The Radio Network, ends a decade on the New Zealand and Auckland Cricket boards; Hansen spent five years on the NZ Cricket board; and Walsh wanted to focus on her role in charge of the New Zealand operation of Cricket World Cup 2015.

Moller said his three years as chairman and five years on the NZ Cricket board was the same period as his involvement with the NZRU. "Being chairman of New Zealand Cricket is a very time-consuming role - approximately three months of the year, including board and stakeholder meetings, preparation time and travel due to being a director of New Zealand Cricket, the International Cricket Council and Cricket World Cup 2015.

"I also believe it serves the best interests of cricket in New Zealand for a new chairman to be inducted into the International Cricket Council during the tenure of Alan Isaac as president."

- © Fairfax NZ News

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