Howard rejected because he was a backbencher and could be provocative: Roebuck

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Sydney, July 1 (ANI): Noted cricket columnist Peter Roebuck has said that "no one emerges with the slightest credit from the debacle" involving the ICC board's rejection of John Howard's vice-presidency bid.

In a front-page commentary for the Sydney Morning Herald, Roebuck further said: "As far as other ICC nations were concerned, the nomination was provocative. They regard Howard as a backwoodsman; about as progressive as an umbrella."

"The snubbing of the former PM by six of the nine Test-playing nations reveals a deep malaise at the heart of world cricket. Although dressed in the clothes of rectitude, it (ICC) has been about power and patches, control and coins," claims Roebuck.

"Most of all, it is about governance and the lack of it, and the endless soft soaping of the scoundrels running Zimbabwean cricket. Now another antipodean must be found," he adds.

"By promoting and backing Howard, an outsider uninvolved in cricket, Australia insulted New Zealand and Sir John Anderson, its impressive candidate. As far as other ICC nations were concerned, the nomination was provocative," Roebuck says.

"Sensitivity is needed. Indeed it's almost as important as integrity," he adds.

"Howard does bring rigor to the table, and authority. That's why they (African and Asian blocs) blocked him. He might ask awkward questions," claims Roebuck.

He believes that Cricket Australia overplayed its hand.

"The mess is not about politics, or principle, or anything but power. The worst elements at the ICC were scared of Howard and found a reason to stop him before he became strong," he concludes. (ANI)

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