NEW YORK: A former American football coach is all set to bring world-class cricket to the United States.
Keith Wyness, former CEO of Everton and Aberdeen football clubs, with more than a decade of experience in the US, will be responsible for making Twenty20 cricket league a reality in 2013.
Cricket Holdings America LLC (CHALLC) has appointed Wyness as its Chief Executive Officer in a major step towards making the dream of world-class cricket in the US a reality.
Wyness, 54, will be responsible for the delivery of a business plan which will include the sale of Twenty20 franchises for a league planned to start in the summer of 2013.
Wyness has extensive experience in managing the business of elite-level sport, having worked on the Sydney Olympics of 2000 and as the Chief Executive Officer of two Premier League football clubs, Everton in England and Aberdeen in Scotland.
He has also spent more than a decade living and working in the USA, something that has provided him with an understanding of the country’s sporting landscape, and where cricket does and can fit into that landscape.
CHALLC is a joint venture between New Zealand Cricket (NZC) and the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) for the development of cricket within the USA.
NZC CEO David White said: “Cricket Holdings America undertook an extensive, worldwide search to find the right person for the role of CEO and in Keith Wyness we believe we have found that person.”
“What Keith brings to the role is an understanding of sport and its importance in peoples’ lives, the business of sport and the USA’s sporting landscape. Keith’s appointment is an important step on the road towards making regular, top-class cricket in the USA a reality, and with his leadership we look forward to moving forward with increasing speed along that road,” White added.
USACA President Gladstone Dainty said: “Keith Wyness’s appointment is a hugely positive development towards putting the USA centre-stage in the cricket world. USACA looks forward to working with Keith and New Zealand Cricket to make that a reality.”
Wyness said: “I am delighted to take up the role of Chief Executive Officer of Cricket Holdings America. It is very rare for an opportunity as exciting as this to come along within sport, to have a clean page to develop what I believe will become a major sport in the USA.”
“Cricket is already the second biggest sport in the world and the USA is the biggest commercial market for sport. My role is to marry those two factors together and there is plenty of potential and opportunity to do that,” he added. “Cricket is already played extensively across the USA with close to 50,000 regular players and it is the world’s second biggest consumer of internet cricket behind India. It means there is already a platform of very interested cricket enthusiasts in the USA and now it is up to us to put together a product that will excite them and also create the opportunity to bring a whole new audience to the game.”
India Post News Service