Newlands has retained the hosting rights for early next year’s Test between the Proteas and England, but Cricket South Africa chief executive officer Thabang Moroe has reiterated some of the required criteria.
Cricket South Africa were concerned about the Western Province Cricket Association’s administration and finances – and the potential disruption caused by the construction of new office blocks at Newlands.
But CSA and the WPCA have since confirmed the series’ second Test, which is scheduled for 3 to 7 January 2019, will go ahead at the iconic Cape Town ground.
What CSA said
“As with all hosting agreements for international matches both here and around the world, there are certain guarantees that need to be put in place to confirm the hosting rights,” said Moroe.
“We are currently gearing up to host the new year’s Test match at Newlands as planned. The readiness of the stadium is on track and, barring a significant change in circumstances, it is unlikely that the venue for this Test will change from our schedule.
“What is equally important is that cricket at all levels, from franchise down to clubs and schools, should not be compromised in any way.”
CSA have suspended WPCA
The WPCA are currently suspended by CSA, who exercised step-in rights last month. According to CSA, the WPCA board were conducting business under distressed conditions in relation to, among others, administration, governance and financial affairs.
CSA have suspended the WPCA board and appointed professor Andre Odendaal administrator. Odendaal is a former WPCA chief executive officer.
“WPCA chief executive Nabeal Dien will be in charge of the smooth running of all cricket operations and will report directly to CSA administrator, professor Odendaal, until such time as CSA is reasonably of the opinion that the WPCA administrative and financial affairs are being conducted according to best practice,” added Moroe.
The WPCA, meanwhile, will host a so-called information session for clubs next week.
The meeting, according to the WPCA, will outline “information regarding CSAs recent decision to exercise its step-in rights in relation to the Newlands development project and other matters.”
Dien added: “The Test match will still be at Newlands. From an operational perspective, we continue as normal.
“I can say with a reasonable amount of confidence that the project is back on track. The main thing is that we draw a line in the sand and move forward. The project is for prosperity and for the future.
“A number of us knew that there would be a lot of pain to get this to where it is today and I sense that a lot of that pain has passed. We will still have pain, but when we get to the end of January 2021, when everything is up then, we will all benefit.”