Stalwarts say farewell to Cricket Wellington
Two of Cricket Wellington’s most prominent figures Robbie Kerr and Mark Borthwick are the first confirmed departures of the organisation’s restructure and more are set to follow.
In a statement, Cricket Wellington (CW) chief executive Cam Mitchell paid tribute to the pair, ‘‘who have chosen to pursue other opportunities’’.
Kerr, father of the White Ferns’ brightest star Amelia Kerr, played first-class cricket for Wellington and was CW’s director of cricket since 2011.
Borthwick spent 16 years with CW and was a long-time coach of the Wellington Blaze women’s team who he guided to two national Twenty20 titles, the most recent in 2015.
‘‘The dedication and professionalism with which Robbie and Mark have approached their roles over long careers at Cricket Wellington reflects their passion and character,’’ Mitchell said.
‘‘They have created positive cricket experiences for many developing Wellington cricketers and coaches. For that, we are truly grateful.’’
Kerr and Borthwick were among up to half CW’s 16 employees told last month their roles had been disestablished amid a major restructure.
It was the result of a fourmonth independent review of the organisation commissioned by CW’s board in April, and led by former Hillary Commission (now Sport NZ) chief executive, Peter Dale.
CWwould not comment on any other staff as it was an employment matter.
Those facing uncertain futures include former Black Caps bats- man Chris Nevin, head of CW’s community arm which is being overhauled, and prominent coaches Ivan Tissera and Rhys Morgan.
Applications for five new fulltimeCWjobs closed on Friday: three in the community arm and two in player pathways to better identify future Black Caps and White Ferns.
Mitchell and board chair Sally Morrison earlier this month confirmed ambitious plans for ‘‘a new operating model and culture for the organisation and cricket in our region’’.
Kerr was made high performance manager in 2010 then director of cricket the following year.
He worked alongside former coach Jamie Siddons and current coach Bruce Edgar in the high performance arm as the Firebirds won three national titles in that time, the most recent the T20 Super Smash crown last season.
‘‘There has been a lot of discussion about what Cricket Wellington’s plans for the future mean for the cricket community. I believe we’ll see positive change ahead and I’m very supportive of the direction the organisation is moving in,’’ Kerr said in a statement.
Borthwick, from South Africa, coached extensively at schools level in Wellington.
‘‘Watching one of my U19 boys, Luke Woodcock, debut for the Firebirds at the Basin where he top-scored in one innings and was the highest wicket-taker in another, as well as getting cited by the umpires for being naughty was definitely a highlight,’’ Borthwick said.
‘‘Other highlights include watching James Franklin become an international cricketer and having players from my U17 national title-winning team achieve in professional sport, with Ged Robinson becoming a Super Rugby player and Stephen Murdoch becoming a Firebird.’’