I think everyone sees a wind of change coming: Scotland chief executive
Published - Jul 2, 2016 7:34 am | Updated - Jul 2, 2016 9:48 am
Malcolm Cannon, Cricket Scotland ‘s chief executive, believes a “wind of change” is on its way to international cricket. The ICC annual conference was staged in Scotland for the first time. This serves as a perfect platform for Scottish cricket to showcase its “positive growth”, according to Cannon.
“We have a lot of people coming in at the grassroots level,” he said. “We have a program going in at primary school level, which will introduce more youngsters to cricket.
“We have a new board and governance structure,” he added. “We have a new approach. It is an exciting time for Scottish cricket.”
The conference has been particularly relevant as a number of major issues on the agenda has made it one of the most anticipated ICC meetings in years. Proposals to revamp the Test and One-Day national formats, involving a two-division Test league system and a new ODI league of 13 countries by 2019 were the headlines of the conference.
They have been proposed in a bid to rejuvenate the formats and shrug off apparent apathy among fans. It is also part of a new-found ICC approach for inclusion beyond the Test world to ensure cricket can properly develop beyond traditional boundaries.
With Scotland being in the frame to be part of the proposed ODI league, Cannon said he was “totally supportive” of the proposals. “(The proposals provide) a clearer and more understandable path for all nations,” he told Cricbuzz on Friday (July 1). “There has been an awful lot of friendlies and to move away from that to a more contextual approach enables the public to engage with cricket more.
“It gives fans and potential corporate partners something to hold on to,” he added. “Without the changes, cricket will not be as exciting.”
Cannon said it was unknown whether the proposals would eventuate but a positive vibe at the conference provided optimism. “It is too early to say what the outcomes will be but the great thing is they are being discussed,” he said. “It is inevitable all the discussions will carry on but I think everyone sees a wind of change coming. (The conference has) been cordial and I think people want to work together.
“For a long time these things were not discussed,” he added. “I think something will get done at some stage, because it has to. It might not happen during this funding cycle but maybe it will be ready soon after that. Change is not going to be done in one swoop, because that would be madness and unravel a lot of what is good. It should be done in bite sized chunks, but it isn’t my call.”
Playing matches against England would appear to be a logical fillip for Scottish cricket but Cannon said Scotland must not solely concentrate on their neighbour. “We have had discussions with the ECB (during the conference),” he said. “Relationship (between the two boards) is very strong and will strengthen. Whether it manifests in more fixtures, I don’t know. The will and appetitive to help (from the ECB) is there. But we need others who want to play. It doesn’t have to be all England.”