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The American Cricket Federation (ACF) announced the creation of its Honorary Advisory Board (HAB). The organization named Michael Holding, Ian Chappell, Alvin Kallicharran, Damien Martyn, Nathan Bracken, Stuart MacGill and Niall O’Brien as members of the HAB.
The HAB will provide additional expertise to the ACF Board of Directors, and will be consulted from time to time to give opinions and recommendations on issues of importance, the organization noted in a release.
HAB member Ian Chappell said, “I’ve been aware of many attempts to move cricket forward in the USA – I even spent a couple of days with the USA team in Malaysia in 1998 for the qualifying tournament for the ICC World Cup – and I’m also aware that there has been a lot of bickering amongst the different administrations.
“With that in mind I’m hopeful that the ACF can overcome these difficulties and get the game moving forward in the USA at an improved pace. I look forward to participating on the advisory board with a number of other former international cricketers who all have the game at heart.”
ACF CEO Jamie Harrison said, “We are delighted to have the support of these legendary cricketers as we move forward with the ACF mission to develop the game in the United States. The breadth of knowledge and experience that these individuals bring to the table will be of great value to us as we chart the future of cricket in America, and we are thankful for their backing.”
The addition of these legendary cricketers as honorary board members is seen by American cricketers as ACF's latest salvo as the organization presents itself as a viable alternative to USACA. USACA had named Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Mike Young as USACA Cricket Ambassadors in September of 2013. Colin Miller had joined USACA in a similar capacity earlier in the year. According to USACA, the Cricket Ambassadors are high profile cricketers who reside in USA and have offered to help the organization promote cricket to a broad American audience.
The announcement by ACF comes just days after the organization released details regarding two important initiatives that could enhance the organization's appeal as it takes on USACA. On January 8, ACF announced that it was offering new member insurance options through an arrangement with Sadler Sports and Recreation Insurance. USACA has offered an insurance option for some years now and its program is administered by Zain Jeewanjee Insurance.
On January 13th, ACF announced that it had partnered with CricHQ for provision of online scoring, competition and tournament management for all ACF cricket. CricHQ had announced a similar deal with USACA in April 2013.