Absurd to think ACA boss should go: Watson

Rob Forsaith
Shane Watson (pic) has slammed 'whispers' that Greg Dyer should quit as players' union chief

Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) president Shane Watson has teed off at "absurd reactionary whispers" about Greg Dyer, suggesting it is "nonsense" to think the players' union chairman should quit.

ACA boss Dyer has opposed head office's recent cost-cutting drive, arguing the governing body risks "disastrous long-term consequences" by cutting so deep.

Dyer also memorably sparred with Cricket Australia throughout the 2017 pay dispute.

Many at CA hoped the removal of former chairman David Peever in 2018 would prompt Dyer to also step down, believing it might help to deliver a fresh start for the warring parties.

Watson was stunned to read that similar sentiment allegedly existed when CA chief executive Kevin Roberts was axed, having alienated staff and stakeholders with his response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"There were some absurd reactionary whispers this week and picked up in the media that just as CA's CEO has resigned, so should Greg move on from the ACA," Watson wrote on ACA's website.

"What nonsense.

"In an odd week for cricket, perhaps the most-bizarre suggestion was that someone so selfless, forward thinking and consistently proven to be correct - time and time again - should consider their position.

"I look forward to working with him as we look to cricket's next challenges."

Former star allrounder Watson describes Dyer, who has headed the ACA since 2011, as a "pillar of strength and wisdom across all facets of the business".

"I continue to learn an incredible amount from him about skills needed outside of cricket that will help me greatly as I move into the next phase of my life," he wrote.

"His perspective is always on point and with the players' wellbeing and the health of the game of cricket at heart.

"Protecting the (Sheffield) Shield and WNCL and state cricket from unnecessary cuts - and the players from unreasonable CA revenue reforecasting - was the latest in a long line of achievements for cricket."

The ACA and CA are still locked in negotiations over player pay for the next financial year, with the players' association having formally disputed the governing body's financial forecasts.

Interim chief executive Nick Hockley has vowed to take an active role in trying to reach agreement with the ACA.

"Nick is highly credentialed and did an outstanding job as the CEO of the T20 World Cup local organising committee," Watson wrote.

"The ACA looks forward to working with you as partners ... we urge Nick and CA to remember there is so much to be positive about in cricket."