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The Gus and Webby show

Phil Gould and Andrew Webster tackle the big issues of League in the inaugural Gus and Webby show.

PT10M40S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-34m9w 620 349

Political in-fighting has prompted the shock resignation of Men of League vice-chairman and co-founder Jim Hall.

Former Kangaroos hooker Noel Kelly and fellow board member Neil Musgrave have also resigned.

Jim Hall (far right) at a Men of League function with Martin Cook (L) and Noel Bissett.

Jim Hall (far right) at a Men of League function with Martin Cook (L) and Noel Bissett. Photo: Elesa Lee

A growing lack of confidence in newly-appointed chief executive Corene Strauss caused the trio to quit at a board meeting on Monday afternoon.

It follows the resignation of another board member, Royce Ayliffe, in February after Strauss was given the job ahead of former NRL salary cap auditor Ian Schubert.

There is also concern from some members about cost-cutting for welfare officers, as well as a restructure of the organisation that has for the past 12 years helped former footballers doing it tough.

Happier times: Men of League CEO Corene Strauss with president Ron Coote (R) and board member Noel Kelly last October.

Happier times: Men of League CEO Corene Strauss with president Ron Coote (R) and board member Noel Kelly last October. Photo: Supplied

Hall could not be contacted on Tuesday, but he made his dissatisfaction known in his resignation letter, a copy of which Fairfax Media has obtained.

"It is with sincere disappointment that I make this move," Hall wrote. "I cannot continue on this board. The past two years has not been enjoyable and the new direction the foundation is heading is not to my liking.

"The foundation was formed by Max Brown and myself with the view of assisting ex-players, officials and referees who were on hard times. I have seen the foundation develop from that time to the 25,000 or so members today.

"We were able to bring back to the game former players because we were not controlled by the hierarchy of rugby league.

"We built a great name of which I am immensely proud of. We developed a welfare system that was the envy of most other similar organisations.

"In recent time, Corene has been appointed and what welfare systems and relationships that we had developed has been cast aside ... I have not been consulted by her about any welfare matters but have heard a lot of ill-founded criticism about it."

Strauss did not return calls, but chairman Ron Coote staunchly defended Strauss and her appointment.

"Corene has come in and her knowing of corporate governance and her ability has been fantastic," he said. "She's written a strategic plan that will ensure the Men of League is self-funding in three years.

"The Men of League has been going for 12 years, and we've done a mountain of good in that time. There are still people on the board with the same vision as when we started."