Earl Eddings, Cricket Australia Chair, said:
“I am continually humbled by the commitment, passion and resilience of the thousands of people who work across Australian Cricket. There is no doubt the past 12 months have seen some incredible challenges for our sport,” he said.
“We started the financial year with strong momentum having made the finals in the Men’s World Cup and securing the Women’s Ashes through the UK summer. Retaining the Men’s Ashes helped reinforce the public’s returning trust in the team.
“We are playing more cricket than ever before, more formats and there’s more coverage of the game. There is greater awareness in the women’s game, in fact making up about a quarter of free-to-air coverage, the most we’ve seen in history and more than any other sport in Australia.
“There is no doubt this year has been difficult on a number of fronts across Australian Cricket and we have had to work together to navigate our way forward. The decisions at times have been difficult however critical to ensuring our ongoing financial sustainability.
“Today Paul Green and Richard Freudenstein have been re-elected to serve another term on the CA Board. Both Paul and Richard have made a wonderful contribution to our Board and I look forward to continue working with them.
“We also welcome two new Board Directors. Congratulation to Dr Vanessa Guthrie and Mike Baird AO, on their appointments. Their tremendous skills, expertise and experience will be highly valued as we continue to push forward through these current challenges.
“After eight years as a Director, Jacquie Hey has stepped down from the CA Board. Jacquie was appointed in 2012 and was CA’s first female Director. During her time on the Board, Jacquie has made a significant contribution and personally I am grateful for her guidance, wisdom and leadership.
“With our season already successfully underway we are incredibly optimistic about our future and together with the players and our State and Territory partners, we look forward to delivering a safe and successful summer of cricket,” Eddings said.
Nick Hockley, Cricket Australia Interim Chief Executive Officer said:
“Despite droughts, bushfires and the pandemic, we must remember that cricket in Australia has been extremely fortunate to largely complete the 2019-20 summer and there were some wonderful moments thanks to both our men’s and women’s teams.
“Participation in cricket is the lifeblood of our sport. Australian Cricket this year reviewed the way in which we measured and tracked participation, with a renewed focus on registered participation. It’s exciting to know that more people picked up a bat and ball this year, reversing a gradually trend over the past three years.
“Overall growth was 3.8% with the focus areas of female participation up 11.4% and 14% more kids taking part in Woolworths cricket blast programs. Growth was also supported by lower rates of attrition at club level – 76% compared club cricketers were retained last year compared to 64% the year before.
“Looking back on the year, there is no doubt we have had our challenges. We implemented a program of operational changes to deliver around $40m savings, which will in part help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 in FY21. Sadly, this program included a reduction of 40 roles from CA. While not easy, these decisions were made to protect our investment in community and high-performance cricket, while ensuring the game remains in robust financial health.
“Thanks to the passion, dedication and tireless work of all volunteers, State and Territory Associations, our partners and our people across Australian Cricket, we will continue to be driven by our passion for the game and a shared belief that cricket plays an important and valuable role in Australian society,” Hockley said.