Hohns calls time on lengthy stint as selection chair
Long-serving selector opts not to further extend his tenure on Australia men's national selection panel
30 July 2021, 03:43 PM AEST
Cricket Australia is expected to announce a new chair of their men's national selection panel early next month now that long-serving supremo Trevor Hohns has confirmed he won't be continuing in the role.
Hohns, who has served two stints in the high-profile position from 1995-2005 and 2016-2021, turns 68 next January and had previously indicated he was nearing the end of his tenure.
The former Test leg-spinner, who was a member of Allan Border's 1989 Ashes squad that claimed Australia's first series win against England in the UK for 14 years, had agreed to serve an additional term when his previous contract expired in early 2020.
That was soon after Greg Chappell announced he was stepping down as a selector and Hohns continued as chair to ensure a smooth transition after ex-Test batter George Bailey was appointed to the panel alongside men's team coach Justin Langer, who was less than two years into his job.
It is understood Bailey is among the candidates to take over from Hohns, with confirmation of an appointment expected in coming weeks.
The men's limited-overs squad arrived in Dhaka earlier today ahead of a three-match T20 series against Bangladesh starting next Tuesday, and the next assignment for the selection panel is to finalise Australia's squad for the ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman in October and November.
Hohns's stints as selection chair have proved remarkable for the results he has overseen as well as for his length of service.
During his initial term as chair, the Queenslander was integral to a golden era of Australia men's cricket in which they won five Ashes series on the trot and strung together a record 16 consecutive Test wins, as well as back-to-back ICC World Cup triumphs in 1999 and 2003.
Hohns stood down from the position after Australia's defeat in the memorable 2005 Ashes in the UK, but returned to the role of selector in 2014 before taking over the chairmanship from Rod Marsh in 2016 after Australia suffered a home Test series defeat to South Africa.
While selectors' contracts historically came up for renewal at the start of August, when Hohns was appointed to a full-time role in March 2017 (with Chappell a part-time panel member and Mark Waugh focused specifically on T20 selection) his contract was extended until February 2020.
Having then extended that term until August this year, Hohns has confirmed to CA he won't be seeking an additional stint as either chair or a panel member.
After a quiet off-season due to the impacts of the global pandemic, Australia's men's team faces a hectic six months or more having just completed the Qantas Tour of the West Indies that comprised T20 and ODI competitions.
Following the upcoming Bangladesh series and subsequent T20 World Cup, the team returns to Australia for an historic maiden Test against Afghanistan (in Hobart) in November, before hosting England for the Vodafone Ashes from December 8 in Brisbane.
Immediately after the Ashes they play three ODIs and a T20I against New Zealand before the five-match Dettol T20I series against Sri Lanka that finishes on February 20 next year, after which the Test team is scheduled to make their first visit to Pakistan in almost 24 years.