Where in the world is Don Bloody Argus?

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June 25, 2013 by dixwah

Hi guys, back again. No Wimbledon preview, no NBA Finals wrap. Even British Lions drinking games and the Origin punch-on have been left alone.

It’s taken the sacking of Mickey Arthur to end my hibernation. Arthur’s card was punched. A tenure of poor performances, off-field discretions and an open lack of cohesion within the team meant someone had to go. Pat Howard wasn’t going to knife himself. Game over.


Boned – Mickey Arthur

I’m going to start with a bit of a correlation I’ve seen in the demise of Melbourne Demons coach Mark Neeld and Aussie Mickey.

Both coaches have paid the price for the underperformance of their team. Their ultimate responsbility (as it was for Tim Nielsen, Dean Bailey?) is to create an environment that fosters team success.

But haven’t both of these guys been essentially hamstrung by destructive forces outside of their control?

You know where this is headed, yep the accountability angle. How is it that these guys walk the plank rather than those who created an implemented the systems that led to failure?

Here they come. Melbourne’s CEO and President were both out before Neeld. But they didn’t take the heat.

The Demons’ board (who incidentally took on Cameron Schwab as CEO) oversaw a period of poor performance, the tanking situation that led to good draft picks that were mismanaged, the big fine, and even more to the point, the signing of Neeld!

Shouldn’t they take responsibility for the decision to go with a guy who they then declared was not up to the task?

I digress. Today is cricket. And yes, as a sports nut I do love living in Melbourne, thanks.

Australian cricket was getting dirty by the time Don Argus was called in to review its operations. It’s now disgusting.

He’s accountable. One. Then there’s the people who were implemented as a result of his analysis. Pat Howard, bang. Howard was involved in the recruitment of Mickey Arthur, but stays afloat. Anyone else?

Why not have a quick peek at the old Argus review of August 2011 and report on Donnie’s vision:

Creation of General Manager – Cricket Performance position

Epic. Fail. The direct failure here is Pat Howard. I guess it’s unclear whether the position or the person is untenable. Howard’s mismanagement of the Shane Watson suspension, the Warner stuff and now the coaching merry-go-round (a direct report to him) show this up.

First and foremost, Howard oversees ‘cricket performance’. If he survives two Ashes losses it will be further proof the lunatics are in charge.

The wrong man or the wrong job? Pat Howard smiles from his ivory tower

The wrong man or the wrong job? Pat Howard smiles from his ivory tower

The 5-man selection panel

This was a previous system that was proved a failure and reimplemented by Argus. Professional cricket is no place for favourites. Independent and transparent selectors are needed, and the captain and coach cannot remain independent in their own positions with selection responsibilities.

Clarke’s recognition of this shows Argus up.

Focus on shield

Argus got it right here, however I’m unsure as to whether a decrease in the quality of pitches or batmanship has seen the lack of Shield runs in recent times.

Was intereseted to hear a discussion involving an Australian county cricketer (not contracted here), who said domestic cricket in England (at least Division I) was now rated above Shield.

Argus can’t take responsibilty for scheduling or a trough in our talent, but if Arthur had to go, it’s time to shine a light on the implementation of a process that sped the slippery slope.

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