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Volume 7 No. 149

Leagues and Governing Bodies

Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association "are set to shelve mediation plans" in favor of an "unprecedented peacemaking meeting" between the boards of both organizations, according to Tom Morris of FOX SPORTS. Released two weeks ago, Simon Longstaff's "damning" cultural review recommended CA and the ACA meet within 30 days to "establish a constructive working relationship." It "was recommended the assistance of a mediator would be required," but both organizations, in a "significant act of goodwill," are reportedly committed to "only using a mediator if absolutely necessary." Because of the logistical difficulties in organizing an extraordinary conference with 14 working people in attendance, the meeting "is likely to take place next week rather than this week." CA's board is currently headed by interim Chair Earl Eddings, while the ACA chair is former Australian cricketer Greg Dyer (FOX SPORTS, 11/12).

The CA board is expected to talk to former cricketer Glenn McGrath about his availability.

SURPRISE CHOICE?: In Sydney, Robert Craddock reported former cricketer Glenn McGrath "has been discussed as a potential surprise choice for the Cricket Australia board." The resignation of former captain Mark Taylor "has left a gap for a player to join Michael Kasprowicz, who remains the sole former Australian player on the board." The board has discussed McGrath and plans to "sound him out about his availability." The "slight catch is the concern over board members who have media commitments." McGrath is contracted to Macquarie radio network, which will broadcast the cricket summer, "though these responsibilities are not likely to impede any approach" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 11/13).

NOT JUST YET: In Sydney, Peter Lalor reported CA's board "resolved to respond to the call to lift the bans on Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft by next week," but all indications are that it is "not ready" to bring the trio back to int'l cricket early. The ACA "made a submission to the board at the start of the month." While there is a push, backed by Ian Healy, to get Warner and Smith back playing Sheffield Shield cricket after Christmas, "there seems little hope" they will play test cricket before March 29 when their term ends. For his part, Warner said that he was "resigned to seeing out his penalty." He said, "I'm sitting here 12 months on the sideline, that's my take on it" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 11/13).

Ivan Cleary agreed to coach Penrith from '19 despite having two years left on his Wests Tigers deal.

The National Rugby League "will explore introducing strict anti-poaching rules to ensure there is no repeat of the coaching merry-go-round farce that has plagued rugby league in recent months," according to Dean Ritchie of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. NRL CEOs during a conference in Sydney on Tuesday will reportedly discuss "implementing new rules preventing coaches signing with another club more than a year before coming off contract, or else they face serious penalty." Under the proposal, coaches who break the rules would face suspensions, while clubs found guilty of breaches would be "heavily fined." It would "avoid the fiasco which has unfolded in recent months" after Ivan Cleary signed with Penrith despite having two years remaining on his Wests Tigers deal. Under NRL rules, players cannot be formally signed or registered until they move inside the final year of their existing contract. The push will be for coaches to operate under the same Nov. 1 deadline. NRL CEOs will discuss "a raft of measures to prevent the coaching merry-go-round which damaged rugby league's integrity this year." Canberra CEO Don Furner said, "We will probably need to look at some restrictions on poaching" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 11/12).

The IAAF will continue to use qualifying standards, not a new world rankings system, for the 2019 Doha World Championships. The IAAF said that feedback from athletes and members of the athletics community "led to the decision to delay implementation of the ranking system." IAAF President Sebastian Coe said, "We believe strongly that the world rankings is the best way for athletes to qualify for our major championships in future" (REUTERS, 11/11).

The IOC reportedly urged int'l federations not to stage events in Spain "unless the country can guarantee equal participation to all competitors including athletes from Kosovo." The warning comes "in the wake of controversy" after the Spanish government prohibited Kosovan participants from competing under their flag at the 2018 Karate World Championships in Madrid (RT, 11/12).