The only good that can come from the unseemly John Howard fiasco is that it might finally galvanise the game into doing something serious about making the ICC an accountable and more transparent body.
The fact that the ICC president is chosen on a rotation basis rather than on merit is in itself an indictment on the game. That it depends on such a public service type system to decide it’s most prestigious position is a disgrace.
To then agree to a process for nominating the person of highest office and when that very system produces a candidate, albeit one of dubious cricketing credentials, connive to reject that nominee without a reason, is very unedifying behaviour.
The first thought is, this is payback for the power of veto that was held by Australia and England from the early days of the ICC right through to the 1990s.
There was never any doubt that this rankled with fans from the sub-continent and the Caribbean. Whenever this was mentioned to administrators from Australia, they would blithely say, “But that power’s never been used.”
Those administrators failed to understand that just the inclusion in the constitution of a power of veto that smacked of a “superiority mentality” was enough to cause anger.
However, if Howard’s rejection was on the basis that some in the ICC didn’t want him “snooping around” and uncovering something, which might be embarrassing, then it’s high time some concentrated digging commenced to see what that “something” might be.
Howard’s credentials to do the job were flawed from the outset.
For starters, his self-confessed preference for Test cricket presents a major problem for a game that relies so heavily on the shorter versions for its finance.
Cricket needs to take some hard decisions on its future path and Howard’s lack of knowledge would’ve been a hindrance.