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By Peter Della Penna (on Twitter)
In part two of a two-part interview, USACA CEO Darren Beazley goes into his vision for grassroots development in the country especially in regards to youth and infrastructure development. He also talks about trying to establish a unique identity for cricket in the USA and discusses why he took the job of USACA chief executive in an organization historically plagued by poor administration.
The full episode can be accessed by clicking here. Part one of the interview is available here and both parts can also be downloaded for free on iTunes. The following is a quote from part two of the interview.
Image (right) - USACA CEO Darren Beazley (right) with USACA General Manager Manaf Mohamed (middle) and USA team manager Shoaib Ahmed (left). [Courtesy: Peter Della Penna/DreamCricket.com]
Peter Della Penna: Some people, when you took the job, they thought you must be out of your mind. Why would you want to leave cushy Australia to come where there’s been so much strife and there’s almost like this scarlet letter attached to USACA? Why on earth did you take this job?
Darren Beazley: When I was first talking… I can read. I went online and I went ‘Whoa, this is a challenge’ and look it is. But why? Two reasons. From a personal point of view, I’ve talked about my family and here’s a chance for my wife to come home and for my children to celebrate their American heritage. That’s really important to me. From a career point of view, it’ll either make me or break me Peter. No, look I love challenges. Why would I be trying to develop football into South Africa? Why would I take on Olympic sailing in Australia. I mean Australians all know about sailing but they know about Australia II America’s Cup. When it comes to Olympic sailing it’s a different thing. I don’t know. I’ve just been through this period in my life the last 20 years or so where I want to give something back to the sport and I’m serious about that and sincere about it and I love a challenge. I can tell you that I think the potential for cricket in America is enormous and I know that the ICC feels the same way. So I think that it behooves everybody that’s listening to this tonight to serious think about putting down their guns for a minute, and their swords and whatever else they’re fighting with, their pots and pans, and actually think about this because I actually think this is a really unique point in time. I really do. I think we’ve got a little window of opportunity here to show that we actually can come together and we can actually show the rest of the cricketing world that we can play because we’ve got guys and girls that are big and strong. We have guys and girls that are smart. We’ve got athletic people. We’ve got a great environment and we’ve got lots of money. This country has got lots of money. I know they’ve been through the [Global Financial Crisis] but we’ll come back and we’ve got lots of smart people that know how to run sport better than any other country in the world, better than Australia, better than England, better than you name it. So why wouldn’t we actually try and have a go at trying to do this? It might be utopic and whatever, but every day I’ve got out of bed so far I’ve been really looking forward to coming to work because for every one person that tells me I can’t do it, there’s four people saying you know what we believe you can and that motivates me. In the same way as people threw brickbats at me and said that you’ll never get sailing on free-to-air television in Australia, you’ll never get a big sponsor, you’ll never play any role in Australia’s ability to pull down gold medals. Well, we did all those things and the Australian sailing team is the most successful team that Australia produced at London 2012. So I love a challenge. This is going to be probably the biggest challenge in my life and I’m going to give it my all and if at the end of my time Peter I’ve failed, I can tell you one thing mate. It won’t be because I didn’t try.