The Professional Cricketers’ Association is pleased to announce the appointment of Tony Irish as its new Chief Executive.
Subject to obtaining the relevant permits Irish will succeed current CEO David Leatherdale, who informed the PCA Board of his intention to step down from the role in May. Irish has been appointed following a thorough recruitment process. He will take up his new role at the PCA in January 2020 after completing his notice period.
Appointed the Executive Chairman for the Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations (FICA) in 2014, Irish is the figurehead for ensuring global cricketers have a voice. He also currently holds the position of Chief Executive for the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA), a union he was instrumental in establishing in 2002.
A trained lawyer, Irish worked in a large corporate law firm before establishing his own business focussing on sports and entertainment law. He then went on to head SACA and has led the association for 17 years and through three major collective bargaining agreements spanning the last 12 years. He will continue in his position with FICA, providing the PCA with unrivalled knowledge of the global game to support professional cricketers in England and Wales.
Irish has also chaired the Board of My Players and the South African Rugby Players’ Association and is currently a Non-Executive Vice-President of the World Players Association, a multi-sport union bringing together professional players and athletes employed in numerous sports across the world.
PCA Chairman, Daryl Mitchell, said:
“To attract somebody who has the credentials of Tony to the PCA is extremely positive news for all PCA members. I have been involved in the recruitment process to ensure David’s successor will continue the momentum he built over his tenure in championing professional cricketers in England and Wales.
“David joined the PCA in 2016 and has done a superb job in guaranteeing PCA members are rewarded better than they ever have been. He has led successful negotiations through the County Partnership Agreement, which will see career-changing improvements for many, with every single player better off.
“I am really looking forward to working closely with Tony who joins the PCA understanding the importance of players having a strong voice through his role at FICA and the South African Cricketers’ Association.”
PCA Non-Executive Chairman, Julian Metherell, said:
“Since David announced his intention to step down in May, the Board has conducted an extensive search for his successor.
“There was a great deal of interest in the position from some extremely high calibre individuals, inside and outside of sport. Tony brings an unrivalled knowledge of international cricket and a strong commercial background to his new role as Chief Executive of the PCA.
Incoming PCA Chief Executive, Tony Irish, said:
“I’m looking forward to joining the PCA in January and to leading the representation of the professional cricketers, men and women, of England and Wales. This is a very exciting period for English cricket and it is critical that the players, who are key stakeholders, maintain a strong voice in the game.”