Guernsey Press

Latter standing down as Guernsey Cricket CEO

Mark Latter is stepping down as the chief executive officer of the Guernsey Cricket Board.

Mark Latter has been involved with Guernsey Cricket for 22 years, having started as fixtures secretary. (32675504)

The first-ever incumbent of the post will relinquish the reins at the end of November, bringing to an end more than two decades of service in sport administration, having started as fixtures secretary of the then Guernsey Cricket Association under Gary Tapp’s presidency in 2001.

‘I was sat by “Tappy” at a do and probably had one more beer than I had meant to and foolishly said I would like to get involved in cricket,’ said Latter, recalling his introduction.

‘He phoned me the next morning and basically said “do you remember what you said last night?”. I didn’t, but he did and so I came on as fixtures secretary and here we are, 22 years later.’

It became a profession for Latter in 2009 when Guernsey entered the ICC and were told they needed a full-time CEO.

He was working in banking at the time, but personal circumstances including a family bereavement helped convince him to make the switch to sports administration.

‘That opportunity fell at just the right time and I have probably travelled around the world more and met better people through cricket than I ever would have done through banking.’

Latter revealed that now feels like a ‘natural’ time for someone to take on the mantle with a new funding cycle about to start with the ICC and other recent changes that have seen fresh faces come in.

‘Instead of hanging around for a couple of years, it seemed like a good natural break to do something new and also, having been a bit of a one-man band at times for various reasons, we have got more people to start taking roles to move things through,' he said.

'Since making the decision, it seems to have had a good, positive reaction with others stepping up.’

The Guernsey Cricket Board have released a statement in which they paid tribute to Latter’s ‘outstanding contribution’.

‘The Board employed Mark as its first CEO in 2009 when we started receiving ICC funding as an Associate Member. It was very much a case of “build the job as we evolve” because we had never previously been in a position to do the level of development work that this ICC funding would enable.

‘So initially the role ranged from attending ICC Annual Conferences to sorting replacements for broken stumps for Evening League games, and from being the team manager at World Cricket League tournaments in Southeast Asia to designing the GCB website and drafting the local league fixtures – very much a “jack of all trades” situation and Mark has thrived on getting the task done, usually to very tight deadlines.

‘The role has involved Mark being the key point of contact for literally thousands of local cricketers and parents, as well as sponsors, the media, visiting teams, kit suppliers etc. He’s been the public face of Guernsey cricket throughout his 14 years at the helm and has carried out that role in an outstanding manner.’

The Board added that Latter has earned the respect of many key administrator in the global game through his interaction with ICC officials and other country board members all over the world.

‘He has fought our cause very well when it has been necessary, which has been increasingly often as a member country with a small population as we are constantly under pressure.

‘He has presented numerous ideas and proposals on our behalf, and indeed with the greater good of the global game in mind, and has done so in a pragmatic manner which has been very well received by leading influential members of the ICC hierarchy. It is really not easy for somebody from a small member country to achieve that level of respect, which is testament to how Mark has approached those often delicate issues.

‘Mark has never allowed our relatively small size to impede our ambition, and crafted many fruitful partnerships including with Sussex CCC and with a number of internationally renowned coaches. These have allowed players – and officials – of all ages and abilities see the opportunities open to them, and also expose them to the bigger, wider off-island world where mental toughness can be just as important as skills in delivering success.

‘Mark leaves cricket on the island in a very strong place. We have excellent facilities available to all and our clubs have greater identity across evening and weekend participation, several with integrated junior sections. Our women have recently achieved their first ever international ranking and our young children have a pathway through this sport from a young age.

‘Mark can look with great pride on the strides the sport has made under his leadership, and the sport is extremely grateful for his outstanding service. And it has all been achieved with the happiest grumpiness a man could offer!

‘We thank Mark for all his work on our behalf and wish him all the best.’