Cricket Australia is in the hunt for a new sponsor for the men’s team after chief executive Nick Hockley confronted captain Pat Cummins over his contract with energy company Alinta worth nearly $40m .
CA has agreed to terminate the agreement in accordance with age and The Sydney Morning Herald, which was originally signed for four years and would now only be extended for one more season.
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Alinta’s parent company, Pioneer Sail Holdings, has been listed as one of Australia’s biggest carbon emitters.
“Nick lives just down the street, so I catch up with him and chat with him for a bit,” Cummins said. “More than ever before, you’re seeing players’ personalities, interests and passions come through and have a bit more of a say than perhaps in the past.
“I think the most obvious and obvious things you can see is who we associate with. So hopefully when we think about who we want to line up, who we want to invite into cricket, I hope the climate is a real priority.
“I have my own personal opinions, so when it comes to personal sponsorships, there are certain companies that I wouldn’t want to align myself with. When we receive money, whether it’s programs for junior cricket, grassroots football, fan stuff across Australia, I feel a real responsibility that with this we are doing what is the right thing after all.”
Alinta remained strong with the Australian men’s team through the Newlands scandal, when financial services company Magellan left.
It’s understood the players weren’t thrilled about running publicity campaigns for Alinta but felt they had to as the team was under pressure at the time. However, in the five years since the cheating scandal and the improvement in the team’s image under Cummins’ stewardship, the skipper felt it was time to step in.
It comes as Diamonds players refused to wear Hancock Prospecting-branded uniforms and expressed solidarity with team member Donnell Wallam, a Noongar woman who has raised concerns about the record of the enterprise on aboriginal issues.
It comes as the International Cricket Council unveiled a sponsorship deal with Saudi state oil company Aramco, raising questions among players and spectators at the Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia.
“There are a lot of great initiatives and passionate people out there, but I would love to see some of that passion turn into real action,” Cummins said. “I hope the purpose of sport is to hopefully be a good thing for society and who we associate with, what decisions we make, I hope, in the best interests of not just the sport but Of our society.
“If the last 12 months is anything, it’s becoming more and more relevant, and in a place like Australia we have no excuses. We have so many resources and opportunities there. Hopefully that every time we make decisions and look at what the fans want, is it the right thing, is it the best thing for cricket, hopefully the climate is a big part of that conversation.”
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