Former New South Wales premier Mike Baird has been appointed as the new chair of Cricket Australia.
Baird will take over as the organisation’s new boss from February, with his predecessor Lachlan Henderson stepping down after moving back to Perth.
Henderson will remain on as a director, but has decided to move out of the role after taking up the chief executive’s job with HBF.
Only appointed in February, Henderson has overseen several crucial developments including the recent David Warner saga.
The former Waca chairman came into the job weeks after Justin Langer’s exit as men’s coach and has overseen Andrew McDonald’s elevation into the role.
Australia also completed men’s tours of Pakistan and Sri Lanka in trying circumstances amid security concerns.
However this home summer has been more problematic, with CA’s handling of Warner’s bid to have his leadership ban overturned, heavily criticised in the past week.
“The new role I’ve taken in my home city Perth will make it difficult to devote the time required as chair, so I have decided this is the right time to hand over the role,” Henderson said.
“It’s been a great privilege to serve as chair and to help oversee some of the great work being done by the CA executive and across Australian Cricket.”
Baird takes over at a time where a new TV rights deal and pay agreement with players loom as significant challenges in the next year.
The 54-year-old brings serious clout to the role, given his previous job as premier of NSW between 2014 and 2017.
He previously spent a year on the Cricket NSW board, before moving into a CA director role in 2020 as the state’s nominee.
Baird was then unanimously endorsed as the new chairman by fellow CA directors and state chairs in the past week.
“It is an honour to take such an important role in Australian cricket at a time when so much exciting work is being done to grow our national sport and take it forward,” Baird said.
“I’m pleased to have the chance to work even more closely with CEO Nick Hockley and his team and all those working across Australian cricket.”
In a statement, NSW chair John Knox said Baird was “an outstanding leader” with “an excellent understanding of the key issues driving the future of the game”.