[Australia], May 8 (ANI): Cricket Australia Chair, Earl Eddings on Wednesday commended significantly improved player behaviour, highlighting important cultural change taking place across national cricket.
As national players across the country prepare for the ICC Men's World Cup and men's and women's Ashes series, Eddings said Australians should have confidence that positive changes are being made which will enhance Australian cricket at all levels.
"After the events of Cape Town, and through the renewed leadership of Cricket Australia, we have quite rightly turned the spotlight onto each and every aspect of Cricket Australia to ensure positive change is reflected both on and off the field," he said.
Eddings pointed to the substantial reduction in the code of conduct charges recorded this past season as a key indicator of the players renewed respect for the game and its millions of fans.
"Everyone in Australian cricket is well aware that it's not just winning that counts, but how we play the game, and the players have certainly embraced that spirit. While we can talk about the cultural change program underway, ultimately, we will be judged by our actions on and off the field," he said.
"With a stronger focus on values and behaviour, this past season saw a 74 per cent decrease in the code of conduct charges from the national teams through to our national championships for the country and indigenous teams."
"In particular, it is a credit to the leadership of Interim Executive General Manager of Team Performance Belinda Clark, National Men's Coach Justin Langer and the Australian Men's Team to see zero code of conduct charges for the first time since 2011/12," Eddings said.
Other code of conduct results includes, a 71 per cent reduction in charges for domestic women's competitions; a 43 per cent reduction in charges for domestic men's competitions, even with the extended Big Bash League season; a 95 per cent reduction in charges at an underage national championship level; and zero code of conduct charges in the Australian Country Cricket Championships and National Indigenous Cricket championships, down from eight the previous season.
"I would like to praise the male and female players from national teams, through to domestic competitions, youth and other championships for showing greater respect for the spirit of the game. Pleasingly, umpires report that there was a general improvement in respect for the game and their role, with match officials forming stronger relationships with players and coaches," Eddings said.
"This has been and needed to be, an all of game response. While there is always room for improvement these are very good signs which demonstrate meaningful change and will have a positive and lasting impact on Australian cricket at all levels. Cricket Australia's purpose is to unite and inspire communities through cricket, and all State and Territory Associations have embraced that purpose in a demonstration of unity at the top levels of cricket."
"The ongoing cultural change program has been subsequently informed by the Ethics Centre review delivered in late 2018, with a number of those recommendations already well progressed before we received the review."
Cricket Australia is working closely with the State and Territory Associations and the Australian Cricketers' Association to ensure positive changes are happening right across the country.
This includes, acknowledging the important role the State and Territory Associations play with the CEOs now officially part of the Australian Cricket Leadership Team; continued strengthening of the alignment across Australian Cricket to deliver on agreed strategic priorities and resourcing; considerable training across Australian cricket on being a purpose led sport; leadership development and communication; and open dialogue with employees and training on engagement, overcoming adversity and balancing work and well-being. (ANI)