Tom Harrison steps down as ECB CEO after seven years in charge

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ECB chief executive Tom Harrison will leave his post next month after calling time on his seven-year reign

Harrison has stepped down as CEO of the ECB

ECB chief Tom Harrison has stepped down after seven years in the top job.

He has been replaced by Clare Connor, current managing director of England women’s cricket, on an interim basis, while a search for a permanent successor is already underway.

Harrison will officially leave his post next month having overseen both England men’s and women’s sides win the World Cup during his tenure.

But it hasn’t been without controversy, with Harrison spearheading The Hundred, a new limited-overs competition which has polarised opinion, and seeing a decline in Test performances, with the five-day side currently bottom of the World Test Championship.

The ECB cut 20% of their workforce during the pandemic, but Harrison and other senior executives are in line to share a bonus pot in excess of £2.1m owing to the commercial success of The Hundred.

County executives held discussions over calling for Harrison’s removal after his performance in front of a digital, culture, media and sport select committee surrounding allegations of racism by Azeem Rafiq at Yorkshire, and the wider issue of racism in English cricket.

Harrison has proved a polarising figure


Getty Images)

Harrison said on announcing his departure: “It has been a huge honour to be CEO of the ECB for the past seven years. Cricket is an extraordinary force for good in the world and my goal has been to make the game bigger and ensure more people and more communities in England and Wales feel they have a place in this sport.

“The long-term health of cricket depends on its ability to grow and remain relevant and be more inclusive in an ever-changing world.

“The past two years have been incredibly challenging, but we have pulled together to get through the pandemic, overcome cricket’s biggest financial crisis, and committed to tackling discrimination and continuing the journey towards becoming the inclusive, welcoming sport we strive to be. I have put everything into this role, but I believe now is the right time to bring in fresh energy to continue this work.”

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