Philip Black has been formally announced as the new President of Cricket Ireland following the organisation's first 'virtual' AGM, at which it was revealed that the operating deficit had improved from €203K in 2018 to €10k last year.
Following a change to the Cricket Ireland Constitution to mitigate extraordinary circumstances such as the current Covid-19 pandemic, the members also voted on Tuesday for Black’s term to extend to the Annual General Meeting in 2022.
Black has a long involvement in Irish cricket, including being Treasurer of the Irish Cricket Union (ICU), and being part of the team that led the incorporation process of ICU Ltd.
He has also been part of the Cricket Ireland Finance Committee for the last 14 years, a period during which annual revenues have increased from €400K to €10M.
He succeeds outgoing President David O’Connor who steps down after an exciting period during which Ireland's men played their first Test match against England at Lord’s and qualified for the T20 World Cup, and Ireland Women finished third at the T20 World Cup Qualifier, narrowly missing out on the main tournament.
On being approved as the new President, Black said: "It is a great honour to become President, particularly to think of some of those that have preceded me. While the role is largely honorary, you are an ambassador for your country - meeting and greeting people whether home or away.
"It’s not only a proud day for my family and I, but for my club as well. The last president from CSNI Cricket Club was Simon Corlett, one of Ireland’s finest cricketers."
The AGM ‘attendees’ acknowledged the work of outgoing President O’Connor, recognising the unfortunate circumstance that the final few months of his presidency coincided with the Covid-19 pandemic.
Other personnel changes at the AGM included: David Griffin being approved as Cricket Ireland Vice-President, and two new Board Directors - Brian MacNeice and Peter McMorran - being approved to replace the outgoing Bill Cunningham and Alan Waite.
The annual finance report showed an improved financial position for the organisation - from running a €203K deficit in 2018 to finishing with a €10K deficit in 2019 - this despite two significant negative financial impacts of a contracted broadcaster going into administration (€275K loss) and a cybercrime theft (€175K loss).
Cricket Ireland is braced for a fresh financial blow from the impact of the coronavirus following the cancellation of all planned international fixtures on the island this year.
Chief executive Warren Deutrom estimated recently that revenue would be down by as much as 25% in 2020.