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Volume 6 No. 192

Leagues and Governing Bodies

The National Rugby League "has been hit by an exodus of sports doctors," led by Sydney Roosters medico John Orchard, amid a raft of concerns raised during a year in which the code has been turned inside out by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority investigation into alleged doping, according to Chris Barrett of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD.  The long-serving Orchard is set to quit his post at the premiers, "still incensed that personal trainer Sean Carolan was introduced to the club in the pre-season behind his back." At least four other NRL doctors are also resigning, "with some disturbed by the infiltration of sports scientists into clubs" and others also fearing the potential for players to follow in the footsteps of NFL players in the U.S. by suing over past concussions.The departure of Orchard "will be the highest-profile resignation." Newcastle doctors Peter McGeoch and Neil Halpin "are leaving their positions at the Knights, Paul Bloomfield is quitting St. George Illawarra only a year after his move from Manly, and Donald Kuah is exiting Wests Tigers." NRL Chief Medical Officer Ron Muratore "is also understood to be frustrated at being effectively sidelined by the code's administrators during the eight-month ASADA investigation." Kuah and Bloomfield have told Fairfax Media they are resigning for family and personal reasons, while McGeoch is citing a desire to reduce his traveling commitments, having spent 22 years full-time with the Knights. There "is an undertone of serious trepidation among the game's community of sports doctors." Chief among the concerns is the proliferation into clubs of sports scientists "and so-called supplements and nutritional experts outside their control and the treatment dished out to doctors David Givney and Bruce Reid at Cronulla" and Australian Football League side Essendon, respectively (SMH, 10/14).

Former Int'l Cricket Council legal department head David Becker has accused Board of Control for Cricket in India President N. Srinivasan of working against the interests of the game and using "manipulative tactics" to dominate the ICC, according to the PTI. Becker, "who is currently the legal advisor of Cricket South Africa," has accused the BCCI, especially Srinivasan, of bullying the ICC. Becker: "(The ICC) has become powerless in the face of India's dominance, and are forced to succumb to the manipulative tactics of the BCCI -- Srinivasan in particular -- just to keep their jobs." Becker said that the itinerary for India's disputed tour to South Africa next season -- as released by CSA in July -- "was approved by the ICC board." Becker: "When the ICC allows one of its directors to blatantly disregard an ICC board resolution it becomes more than questionable governance, it becomes improper." But both the ICC and CSA, where Becker is one of several legal advisors, "have dismissed his revelations." The ICC said Becker's statements were "inaccurate and unsubstantiated" (PTI, 10/12). The PTI also reported the three-member committee appointed by the Supreme Court to probe the Indian Premier League spot-fixing scandal will call Chennai Super Kings Team Principal and Srinivasan's son-in-law Gurunath Meiyappan "for questioning during its four-month investigation" (PTI, 10/12).

Int'l Cricket Council CEO David Richardson on Saturday announced that the pathway to the ICC World Test Championship had begun with the revealing of the event brand logo. Richardson explained the concept behind the brand icon, saying, "The ICC World Test Championship logo represents a journey that all the Test playing nations will embark upon over the next four years. It represents the global nature and the epic nature of the event." The ICC WTC icon has been created by Bulletproof, a global agency based out of London and N.Y. The icon is designed to be a moving, physical, three-dimensional form that can adapt and reflect its environment (ICC).

Int'l Cycling Union (UCI) President Brian Cookson "has made a brisk and busy start to his tenure in charge of cycling" by opening talks with the World Anti-Doping Agency over the creation of an independent inquiry into doping within the sport, according to Robin Scott-Elliot of the London INDEPENDENT. Cookson "has taken the first steps to deliver pre-election promises," as well as seeking to repair relations between the UCI and WADA and putting in place regime change within his organization. Cookson has already had discussions with leading WADA figures and "wants to create the inquiry to explore all doping cases and also look into whether the UCI itself was complicit in any cover-ups." Cookson said, "These early days are very important for the UCI. We have embarked on the process of implementing our manifesto commitments so we can re-establish our international federation's reputation and make it the best and most respected in the world." Cookson "has overseen the ousting of two key figures" from former UCI President Pat McQuaid's regime. Former Dir General Christophe Hubsch-mid and former Legal Counsel Phillippe Verbiest "have both left." The president has also set up a new commission to improve women's elite racing, "following on from appointing the Australian Tracey Gaudry as the first female vice-president of the UCI" (INDEPENDENT, 10/12).

Tunisia's tennis federation "ordered the country's top player to withdraw from a match against an Israeli player at a tournament in Uzbekistan." Malek Jaziri "had been scheduled to play Israel's Amir Weintraub on Friday in the quarterfinals of an ATP Challenger tournament in Tashkent." He withdrew before the match "and Weintraub advanced to the semifinals of the lower-tier event" (AP, 10/12). ... Two young archers from Arunachal Pradesh, India "were prevented by authorities from leaving for China with stapled visas on their passports, triggering strong statements by politicians from the State, led by former Bharatiya Janata Party MP Kieren Rejiju" (THE HINDU, 10/11).