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By Terry Maddaford

Mark Burgess' sole appearance for the national soccer side in 1967 was hardly one of enduring glory.

But now, more than 30 years on and as one of the four appointees to the new-look New Zealand Soccer council, he is keen to make a worthwhile contribution to a sport he still loves but which has attracted a fair - some might argue unfair - share of adverse publicity lately.

Burgess was in the national team which ended up on the wrong end of an 8-1 result against a powerful Manchester United side at Auckland's Carlaw Park. While he played a few more games for Eden in the early 70s he eventually gave his sporting talents to cricket.

He played 50 tests - captained New Zealand in 10 - and scored 2684 runs before calling it quits to concentrate on business interests. These days, 54-year-old Burgess is a company director for sporting goods company Brittain Wynyard with responsibility for overseeing the Wilson brand.

"I haven't been briefed at all on what we are expected to do," said Burgess, who will be joined on the soccer council by fellow appointees Ian Wells, Steve Sumner and Kevin Stratful.

"I don't know what the issues are, but with the people who are involved I'm sure decisions will be made.

"I'm sure quite a bit of time will be needed in the early stages as we must find out what is happening. I expect we will be briefed after this weekend's annual meeting. Obviously there would not have been the need for this [the new setup] to take place if all was well.

"There will need to be much common sense if we are to get in there and do things right," Burgess said. "With four appointees from outside the game we will be able to get away from the politics."