Marylebone Cricket Club May 3, 2017

MacLaurin to succeed Fleming as MCC president

ESPNcricinfo staff

Lord MacLaurin will return to cricket administration in October © Getty Images

Lord MacLaurin of Knebworth, the former chairman of the England & Wales Cricket Board, will make a return to the sport later this year when he succeeds Matthew Fleming as president of MCC.

Lord MacLaurin, who also served as chairman and chief executive of Tesco and chairman of Vodafone, is widely credited for ushering in a new, more professional era for English cricket during his five-year term from 1997 to 2002.

On his watch, which coincided with the formation of the ECB to succeed the former governing body, TCCB, England laid the foundations of the team that, in 2005, ended Australia's 18-year stranglehold on the Ashes.

Aside from the appointment of Duncan Fletcher as England's first overseas coach, and the groundbreaking introduction of central contracts, MacLaurin oversaw several incremental changes, such as ending the practice of sharing rooms on tour, and insisting on a stricter adherence to dress codes when travelling.

Fleming, whose nomination of MacLaurin was ratified at MCC's annual general meeting on Wednesday, believes that his successor is 'uniquely qualified' for a role that will commence on October 1.

'I first came to know Ian in the late 1990s, when I was chairman of the PCA and he was chairman of the ECB,' said Fleming. 'Ian was exploring ways of restructuring domestic cricket, recognising the increasingly important role of international cricket and international cricketers.

'I was struck by his fairness and clarity of thought about the future of the game, qualities that I believe will be needed in the year ahead, given the uncertainties in the cricketing landscape at present and the opportunities and threats facing the sport.

'In choosing my successor, I was looking for someone who can harness a passion and knowledge of cricket with experience and pragmatism. Ian was a talented cricketer, who played to a good level, and has always been a passionate supporter of MCC. A visionary leader of the ECB, widely respected in the business world he is, all in all, uniquely qualified for and deserving of the role of MCC President.'

'It is one of the greatest honours in cricket to be invited to be the President of the finest cricket club in the world and I am thankful to Matthew Fleming for asking me to succeed him,' said MacLaurin.

'I have been a member of MCC for over 50 years, and I take great pride in seeing how the club has blossomed over that period - not only with the development of this iconic ground but also with all of the work done to promote the game for men and women, boys and girls, around the world. I very much look forward to my year in office and hope to help the excellent team at MCC continue all this good work.'