ICC CEO Manu Sawhney resigns amid inquiry over 'abrasive behaviour' with colleagues
ICC CEO Manu Sawhney resigns amid inquiry over 'abrasive behaviour' with colleagues
Photo: ICC

Four months after suspended International Cricket Council (ICC) CEO Manu Sawhney's "abrasive conduct" came under the scanner during an internal investigation he has resigned from his position on Thursday.

"Chief Executive Manu Sawhney will leave the organisation with immediate effect. Geoff Allardice will continue as Acting CEO supported by the Leadership Team working closely with the ICC Board," ICC said in a statement.

Sawhney was sent on "leave" in March pending an inquiry after he came under scrutiny for his "abrasive behaviour" with colleagues. He had termed the governing body's probe against him as a "premeditated witch-hunt".

It is understood that Sawhney, who replaced Dave Richardson after the ICC World Cup in 2019 for a tenure till 2022, hasn't also been on best of terms with some of the influential cricket boards with regards to various policy decisions.

The 56-year-old has been under pressure since the election process for the new chairman was set in motion last year, which ended with Greg Barclay taking the position in November.

It is alleged that Sawhney's "authoritarian style of functioning" is far removed from the inclusive approach taken by Richardson and has not gone down well with the employees.

Also, a few cricket boards seem unhappy with him for backing interim chairman Imran Khawaja during the elections last year.

The second reason why some of the bigger boards are upset is his backing to the ICC's recent decision of asking boards to bid and pay a fee for hosting events during the next cycle.

It is understood that Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and Cricket Australia (CA) are completely against the idea and have made their displeasure clear at the various board meetings.

All you need to know about Manu Sawhney:

Sawhney became the fifth Chief Executive of the ICC on April 1, 2019, succeeding David Richardson who had held the role since June 2012.

Sawhney is the former CEO of Singapore Sports Hub and Managing Director of ESPN Star Sports with 22 years of commercial experience in both sport and broadcasting in senior leadership roles.

According to the ICC website, Sawhney was with ESPN Star Sports for 17 years and during his tenure as Managing Director was responsible for scaling the business and doubling annual revenues whilst delivering an innovative content and digital growth strategy and building strong partnerships with stakeholders across 24 countries in Asia. Additionally, he led the global broadcast partnership deal with the ICC that ran from 2007-2015.

He is also a non-executive director and member of the Audit Committee of Manchester United Ltd.

As per his LinkedIn profile, Sawhney did his schooling at Delhi Public School, R. K. Puram. He completed B.E. Mechanical Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology and Science and later pursued Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade.

(With PTI inputs)

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