Haroon Lorgat has left Cricket South Africa, the sport’s governing body in South Africa, by mutual consent.
The organisation’ former chief executive leaves his role, which he had held since 2013, with immediate effect. He is believed to have handed in his laptop and mobile phone after a series of acrimonious board meetings with the CSA board.
In July, Lorgat announced that the CSA had launched an eight-franchise T20 competition named the T20 Global League to replace South Africa’s previous domestic T20 tournament, the Ram Slam. The inaugural Global T20 commences in November.
Lorgat’s role in organising the league has, however, come under increased scrutiny. In July, questions arose over Lorgat's dealings with broadcast rights partners, the lack of transparency around franchise owners, as well as the side-lining of colleagues.
It is understood that he will be supported by CSA president Chris Nenzani as well as independent board member Louis Von Zeuner.
"We recently tried on a few occasions to remedy the situation between Mr Lorgat and the Board, but we have not been successful in finding a satisfactory resolution," said Nenzani. "The Board unanimously felt that it was in the best interest of the organization that we agreed to a mutual separation agreement with Mr Lorgat.
"It was a tough call for us to make and we recognise that Mr Lorgat had made a big contribution to the success of the organization and together with the board was instrumental in changing the fortunes of CSA when it had endured a troublesome period five years ago.
"We are all saddened by this turn of events, but at the same time we need to look forward to ensure new leadership at CSA builds on the solid foundation laid by Mr Lorgat.
Lorgat released a personal statement that admitted the two parties encountered “many challenges along the way”, challenges that he believes began “at the very outset of my appointment,” but he nevertheless thanked the board for its support.
“It’s been a tough few days as I faced the prospect of moving on from my role at CSA at a time when cricket in this country is strong and entering an exciting new era with the forthcoming T20 Global League,” read the statement. “In late 2015, the T20 Global League was a mere pipe dream. In January 2016, the Board supported my request to explore the prospects for a South African League and provided the mandate to develop the business case.
“Having worked hard since then and to the very best of my abilities, we are all very pleased with the impressive set of team owners and players already in place. I believe we will succeed to be among the best leagues in the world. Sadly though, it is time for me to move on and for someone else to lead the rest of this incredible journey as we are only weeks away from the start of the competition.
“The above is just one of many success stories I feel privileged to have been a part of since my appointment as the CSA chief executive in July 2013. Even though challenging, I have really enjoyed my time at the helm of what is now a vibrant and sustainable organisation that boasts enviable talent across all administrative and operational spheres.”