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Sports Disputes Tribunal Members Announced

21 February 2003

For immediate release

Media Release

Sports Disputes Tribunal Members Announced

Black Fern Farah Palmer and Queens Counsel Kit Toogood QC are among the seven Sports Disputes Tribunal members announced by SPARC (Sport and Recreation New Zealand) today.

The seven member panel is made up of a combination of legal and sporting expertise. The members are Kit Toogood QC (deputy chair), Nicholas Davidson QC (deputy chair), Tim Castle, Farah Palmer, Ron Cheatley, Carol Quirke and Adrienne Greenwood. The Sports Disputes Tribunal will be chaired by Rt Hon E W (Ted) Thomas DCNZM QC who was appointed in December.

SPARC Chairman John Wells said "we are delighted to have such a group of experienced individuals on the tribunal. We were overwhelmed with the number and quality of applications we received for the Sports Disputes Tribunal".

"The view is not so much the number of cases, but the nature of cases in dispute and the fact they are perceived to be handled poorly and so are damaging to the interests of sport generally. As the government arm of sport in New Zealand SPARC has to be seen to handle its disputes with integrity and credibility. The need for a specialist Sports Tribunal was confirmed in a review commissioned late last year" said Mr Wells.

SPARC as a Crown Entity and the central point of contact for sport in New Zealand is the appropriate body and has the expertise to ensure the Tribunal is established and run independently and its services implemented and operated effectively.

The aim of the Tribunal is to provide an independent forum for sportspeople to resolve disputes. On average there are about 46 disputes/cases each year at national level involving doping (about 10-15 annually), selection, harassment, misconduct on and off the field, disputes about the rules of a sporting competition, and disputes about contracts, constitutions and other matters.

For each dispute a panel of 3 will be appointed by the Chairperson to hear and determine the dispute.


Contact for more information:


For further background on the Sports Disputes Tribunal click on
Background on the members of the Sports Disputes Tribunal is below

Kit Toogood QC

30 years experience in litigation
Experience as an arbitrator and mediator
Previous involvement in sports law including work with New Zealand Cricket, New Zealand Rugby League and NZRFU
Keen follower of all sport

Nicholas Davidson QC

Appointed QC in May 1996
Commercial litigator and practises as arbitrator and mediator.
Currently the New Zealand National Cricket Commissioner (appointed in 1992), as final appellate body for disciplinary matters, dealing with appeals by players and administrators.
Member of judicial committees for the NZRFU and SANZAR, and IRB Judicial Officer
Member of Inquiry into allegations of corruption for New Zealand Cricket
Participant in sport over many years

Tim Castle

A practising barrister since 1973;
Chairman: Administrative Appeals Tribunal established under the Fisheries Act 1996;
Involvement in advocating, adjudicating and mediating in sports disputes nationally and internationally for over 15 years;
Judge/Arbitrator of the International Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) based in Switzerland since 1991;
International appointee to the Ad-hoc Division of the CAS established to preside over all and any disputes arising from the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, the Sydney 2000 Olympics and the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games;
One of nine international appointees to the Conduct/Corruption Commission established in 1999 by the International Cricket Council; and an ICC Appeals Commissioner;
Thirty years experience in litigation, representative sport, national and international sports administration and management (including First Vice President, NZ Olympic Committee; and Executive Board Member, NZ Sports Foundation).

Ron Cheatley MBE

Company Director and General Manager
Over 30 years experience in cycling as a competitor, administrator and coach.
Coached NZ Cyclists to a total of 48 medals at Olympic-World Championship-Commonwealth and World Cup level
New Zealand cycling coach for five Olympic Games, four Commonwealth Games, seven World Championships and five Oceania Championships.
NZ "Sportsman of the Year" (Halberg Awards ) Coach Award 1989/1990 & 1998.

Dr Farah Palmer

Doctor of Philosophy
Lecturer, Sport Management and Coaching with specific expertise in the sociological issues surrounding sport.
Member of the Ministerial Taskforce on Sport, Fitness and Leisure (2000)
Member of the NZRFU high-performance subcommittee (2000)
New Zealand Women's Rugby Team (The Black Ferns) 1995-2002
Captain of the Black Ferns (1997-2002)
Australian and New Zealand Sports Law conference. 'Sport and law: Issues for Maori' (2001).

Carol Quirk

Over 30 years experience in sport as an elite competitor, official, coach and administrator.
Experience in sports management including as Manager, Sport Development at the Hillary Commission.
Strong understanding of the issues facing volunteers. A member of the Ministerial Taskforce for the International Year of the Volunteer.
Member of the Surf Life Saving Disciplinary Panel.
Former President Surf Life Saving New Zealand

Adrienne Greenwood

Extensive experience in yachting.
Chief Executive of Yachting New Zealand (1986-2000)
Has considerable experience in Olympic selection and selection policy and in adjudication of yachtings rules.
Member of International Sailing Federation Events Committee (1998 - current)

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