Mark Neita back in charge at Melbourne
Mark Neita was returned unopposed as president of Melbourne Cricket Club for a fourth successive term at the club's annual general meeting on Thursday.
Neita says he is excited to know he has the support of his club members, and he is looking forward to what he describes a successful term in 2017.
"Over the last three years that I have been president, we have, with the support of the committee and everybody else at Melbourne, been able to achieve a lot," he says.
Neita says one of his focuses in his first three terms was infrastructural development around the club. He says this included repaving the sidewalk outside Melbourne Oval, replacing the roof of the clubhouse (damaged by Hurricane Ivan in 2004) and upgrading of the changing rooms and kitchen.
IMPROVING THE SURFACE
While he and his committee intend to continue with these repairs around the club, Neita says the main focus this year will be on improving the playing surface.
"What we are looking to do is finish the field,"EU Neita says. "By March 2017, we should have the cricket field completely renovated. We are trying to create as close to a first-class facility as possible, and we will be going to be moving in that direction."
Neita says the club is in the last stages of negotiating what he describes as a "major contract" with what he calls a "significant sponsor" to develop its academy.
David Wong was also returned unopposed as first vice-president, while James Stewart has been elected as second vice-president. Neil Reese is back as secretary, and Charles Simms, club treasurer.
Paul Brown was also elected club captain while Robert Wright, Errol DaCosta, Rudyard Simons, Evon Reid and Richard Bowen were all elected to the club's committee.