One-day cricket or consecutive weekend days? Decision soon on WPCA club season

The task team, appointed by the Western Province Cricket Association to plan for the 2018-19 club cricket season, will likely recommend the premier league – and first division A – change from two- to one-day competition.

The same will likely be applied to the reserve divisions A and B.

The 2017-18 season was cancelled in late January, due to the ongoing drought in Cape Town and surrounds. Premier league and first division clubs such as Durbanville Cricket Club, Langa Cricket Club, Rondebosch Cricket Club, Cape Town Cricket Club, Green Point Cricket Club, United Cricket Club, Strandfontein Cricket Club and several others did not play four, if not five, of a scheduled 11 matches.

A month later, the task team was commissioned to “unpack and plot the way forward for club cricket, due to the impact of the drought crisis, within the jurisdiction of the WPCA.”

The task team, which has met five times since February, is chaired by WPCA member Ashraf Burns – and features City of Cape Town sport and recreation manager Alexander Dykes, Glamorgan Cricket Club’s Deon Alexander, Milnerton Cricket Club’s Mike Reynders, Victoria Cricket Club’s Richard Noor and Western Province Cricket Club’s Trevor Pape.

Other options are also being contemplated, none of which will reportedly be required if substantial winter rains afford the summer its traditional full complement of fixtures.

“There have been discussions around both options and others, including one-day cricket or playing two-day cricket on consecutive Saturdays and Sundays,” a member of the task team told Club Cricket SA on Tuesday.

No decision has been made yet, although I think it is most likely to go the route of one-day cricket, in order to complete a full round of fixtures if we are going to need to have a shorter season again.

“The next task team meeting is this week and finalisation of playing formats is on the agenda.”

The curtailed 2017-18 seasonĀ did not allow for promotion or relegation. The 2018-19 season will.

“The committee has agreed on a shortened season to ensure a full set of fixtures between teams, with promotion and relegation at the end of the season,” read an excerpt from a recent WPCA statement.

“It is important for all clubs to understand the unusual situation we are faced with when accepting the 2018-19 formats. All clubs will be invited to workshops to discuss the different formats and options to lend further clarity.”

Currently, Western Province is the only province to play two-day cricket. The rest compete in one-day competition.