- 23 Sep
- From the section Cricket
Former Glamorgan one-day captain Jim Allenby says the struggling Welsh county needs restructuring.
Glamorgan are experiencing one of their worst seasons with the 2018 campaign finishing this week.
Allenby believes the club need to bring in an outsider to help transform the flagging fortunes.
The 36-year-old also believes the roles of director of cricket and chief executive, currently both held by Hugh Morris, need to be separated.
Glamorgan will finish bottom of the county championship having won one, drawn two and lost 10 of their Division matches including seven successive defeats.
The Welsh county finished bottom of the 50-over tournament and failed to qualify for the T20 Blast knockout stages. The overall 2018 record reads played 35, won nine, lost 23 with three draws or no results.
Morris and head coach Robert Croft will meet with members during the opening day of the final championship game against Leicestershire in Cardiff on 24 September.
The current Glamorgan coaching and management make-up contains all former players including Morris, Croft, Matthew Maynard, Steve Watkin and David Harrison.
Allenby says there needs to be change.
“You need to have a mixture of people who have been involved with the club for a long time and are passionate and an outsider able to take some emotion out of decisions,” said Allenby.
“I am not sitting here calling for sackings. But someone from outside the current set-up needs to go in and help promote new ideas, challenge and question people.
“Everyone coaching there now are good people but every club needs someone from the outside involved in some sort of leadership role.
“If you look at the successful county teams, they have that mixture of local and imported knowledge.”
Glamorgan can cite mitigating factors for this poor season like injuries to senior internationals Shaun Marsh and Marchant de Lange.
The county have adopted a championship policy of playing young home grown players which has contributed to some humiliating innings defeats.
“The club has made a strategic decision,” said Allenby.
“Championship cricket is about blooding local younger players while the target was competing in white ball cricket for a trophy.
“It has not gone to plan. I spoke to Hugh and Robert at the end of last season about the possibility of helping out and they outlined those plans pretty clearly to me.
“Playing young players all together is a noble cause and a good strategy to have in the right circumstances.
“But you don’t want to teach young players how to get used to losing cricket games. Seasons like the team has had can affect young players in a negative way, long-term.
“It can be hard to learn on the job. It can knock a young players development back rather than accelerate it forward.”
This is Croft’s third season in charge with pressure falling on the future of the former England spinner.
“Seasons like this are going to put pressure on all the coaches but also everyone at the club,” said Allenby.
“Crofty has a tough job because he is following a club policy to promote youth.
“To put it all on him and say his position in jeopardy would be unfair. He is a knowledgeable guy and passionate about the club.”
Allenby believes Glamorgan’s director of cricket and chief executive Morris must separate his two positions.
“Just the role of director of cricket is a lot for one person,” said Allenby.
“To combine that with a head coach or chief executive is a huge ask.
“Hugh has done a great job financially with the business and off-field side of things.
“He has helped get the club out of huge amounts of debt and immediate danger to now what seems to be a relative successful financial sound club and an international host.
“It is a huge challenge for one person to combine a chief executive job with also trying to run day-to-day cricket matters.
“Especially in a club like Glamorgan, which needs a lot of input into both of the roles. Ideally, there should be one chief executive, one director of cricket and head coach.
“The successful county teams all have a similar format. It is not a complicated model and you are not reinventing the wheel.”
Allenby spent five full seasons with Glamorgan before leaving in 2014 for Somerset, a county he finished playing with in 2017.
He hopes Glamorgan’s current plight does not affect support.
“Everyone is hurting now but the advantage you have is almost all Welsh people will continue to support Glamorgan,” said Allenby.
“It gets to a point where you need to rely a bit more than on just patriotic support.
“A few fans seemed to be getting turned off and the innings defeats are tough to take.
“You need to be giving them success and something decent to watch.”
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