David Pryles has been entrusted to make sure that Hockeyroos dramas from the past do not appear after his appointment as the new CEO of Hockey Australia (HA).
- David Pryles joins the organization after serving as CEO of Softball Australia
- Matt Favier resigned as CEO of Hockey Australia earlier this year
- Hockey Australia has undergone an independent culture review of its high-performance women’s program
Pryles joins HA after spending nearly four years as CEO of Softball Australia.
He replaces Matt Favier, who resigned as HA CEO after the Tokyo Olympics.
Favier was forced to face several controversies involving Hockeyroos during his tenure in HA.
Years of discontent within the Hockeyoos organization reached a boiling point in late 2020, when players publicly announced allegations of harassment.
The HA eventually launched an independent audit, which found that there was a dysfunctional culture within the national program for women with high performance.
High-performance director Toni Cumpston has already fallen for the sword at that stage, and Hockeyroos coach Paul Gaudoin resigned just hours before the report was released.
The Hockeyroos have been without a coach for less than five months since the Tokyo Olympics, and Katrina Powell has been given the role under a short-term contract.
The Hockeyroos started the Olympic tournament solidly, before recording a shocking 1-0 defeat by India in the quarterfinals.
With Pryles now locked in as CEO, HA will turn its attention to appointing a full-time coach for the Hockeyroos, and he is known to be Powell in the race.
“Upgrading the cultural overview to a high-performance program is something exciting,” Pryles said in a statement.
“We are really proud of the change we have made in softball by changing our high performance program less than 12 months after the qualifying event.
“It’s less than 12 months until the Commonwealth Games, and two and a half years until the Olympics, so it’s really exciting to be able to change.”
Pryles starts in HA on January 12th.
HA President Melanie Woosnam will resign in November.
Kookaburras coach Colin Batch, who led the men’s hockey team to silver in Tokyo, has been contracted for 2022.