Former Proteas & Australia coach Mickey Arthur slams Aussie cricket culture

Arthur said that despite generational change, Cricket Australia and the national team had demonstrated no real willingness or desire to improve the culture within their organisation.

Former Proteas Coach Mickey Arthur. Picture: Supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Former Australia head coach Mickey Arthur has spoken out on Australia’s ball-tampering scandal that has seen Steve Smith and David Warner banned for a year each.

Writing in Australian publication, playersvoice.com.au, Arthur said that despite generational change, Cricket Australia and the national team had demonstrated no real willingness or desire to improve the culture within their organisation from season to season.

Arthur coached Australia between November 2011 and June 2013, after taking over from Tim Nielsen at the back of a thrashing by England in the home Ashes series of 2010-11. During Arthur’s tenure, Australia won 10 of the 19 Tests, but off-field drama tainted his career as Australian coach, including the homework scandal that was unpopular among some members of the team.

Arthur together with captain Michael Clarke and team manager Gavin Dovey stood four players down for a Test for failing to complete an off-field task, while in the Champions Trophy in which Australia failed to win a match. Arthur’s tenure was marred by the Warner and Joe Root incident were Warner punched Root in a pub in England.

In his piece in the playersvoice.com.au, Arthur describes the ball-tampering incident as an explosion.

“Unfortunately, it was always going to end like this. Despite generational change, independent reviews and too many behavioural spot fires to list, Cricket Australia and the national team had demonstrated no real willingness or desire to improve the culture within their organisation from season to season.

"That could lead to only one conclusion.

"An explosion.

"A deterioration of standards that would culminate in an incident so bad, so ugly, that it would shame the leaders of the organisation into taking drastic action to change the culture, or risk alienating fans, sponsors, broadcasters and other stakeholders.

"It gives me no pleasure to say this. Indeed, for the period between 2011 and 2013 it was my job, as national team coach, to make the very changes I just mentioned were needed. That I wasn’t able to advance that cause disappoints me. I am not for a moment saying I was blameless. There are decisions I would change if I had my time again. But there were other factors at play, factors that have long been associated with Australian cricket.

"Factors that came to a head at Newlands.”