England men’s cricket appoints Rob Key as new managing director

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The former England international’s role will include overseeing strategy and performance throughout the men’s teams  (Getty)
The former England international’s role will include overseeing strategy and performance throughout the men’s teams (Getty)

England have confirmed the appointment of former international Rob Key as the new managing director of the men’s side.

Ashley Giles departed the role in February, having held the post for three years, with Sir Andrew Strauss filling the void on an interim basis since then.

After retiring in 2016 following 21 appearances for England and a club career which included being Kent captain, Key worked in the media as a columnist and commentator and was also on the ECB’s Performance Cricket Committee.

His role will include overseeing strategy and performance throughout the men’s teams, as the rebuild begins in earnest following a dismal period in the sport.

England suffered an Ashes humiliation before the Test team also ended up losing the series to West Indies last month. Joe Root then stood down as Test captain on Friday, saying the role had taken a “toll” on him outside of cricket.

A statement read: “Rob Key has today been confirmed as the new managing director of England men’s cricket.

“Following a rigorous recruitment process, the former England international will take up the role immediately. Key will also relinquish his current role with Sky Sports.

“Key will be responsible for the strategy behind the England men’s cricket teams and the performance pathways leading into them. He will also take a key role as part of the High Performance Review which will begin shortly.”

Key himself said: “It is an absolute honour to take up this role. The chance to have an impact and make a difference is an opportunity given to very few and I will give it everything I have to try shape the next great era of English men’s cricket.

“I have absolutely loved my time at Sky and I could never have imagined leaving were it not for this incredible opportunity. I’d like to personally thank Bryan Henderson and everyone in the team for their help and support.

“Although at this current moment it has been a challenging time in English cricket, I also think it’s as exciting a time as I can remember. With two of our teams near or at the top of the world rankings and an undoubted amount of talent in our game, I hope to try and bring everyone along for the ride so we can all help take English men’s cricket to new heights across all formats.”

Tom Harrison, ECB chief executive officer, added: “Following a thorough recruitment process, Rob stood out in a very competitive field. His passion and knowledge of the game at domestic and international level is outstanding. He is a proven leader and combines an approachable nature with fresh original thinking and resilience which will stand him in good stead. He will bring a lot to the role and I am sure players and staff alike will enjoy working with Rob. I have no doubt he will relish the challenge before us.”

“I’d like to thank Andrew for agreeing to step back into the role on an interim basis. To have someone of his experience and skillset during the transition and recruitment process was invaluable. He remains a huge asset to English and Welsh cricket.”

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