WPCA CEO: Don’t sow panic; establish facts before resorting to rumours

Nabeal DienFile image: Nabeal Dien.

Western Province Cricket Association chief executive officer Nabeal Dien has “urged all clubs not to sow panic and establish the facts before resorting to, and spreading, rumours.”

Preparation of some pitches and fields for the 2018-19 WPCA club cricket season has been slowed due a delay in the arrival of City of Cape Town-appointed contractors at grounds in need of significant improvement after a drought-stricken 12 months.

A recent decision to change the venue for 13 October’s Ama20 Competition group B premier league fixtures, from Milnerton Cricket Club to the University of the Western Cape Cricket Club, evidenced some of the delays.

“I feel the need to provide clarity and information on the current situation around cricket within the province,” Dien said in an email sent to all WPCA clubs this week.

“It should be noted that since June 2017, we have engaged the City on numerous occasions – including the Executive Director, Mr Ernest Sass, as well as the Director of Sport and Recreation, Mr Vincent Botto.

“In a final meeting involving all the District and Area Managers at Newlands on Friday, 28 September 2018, and all the relevant WPCA staff, the readiness of all City facilities was assessed.

“The City undoubtedly has its own internal challenges and have tried to be cooperative in providing the resources to ensure readiness of identified facilities (the office provided this information).

“The City has delayed the appointment of their contractors (their own internal process), which has undoubtedly impacted on the readiness of many facilities – and we have been reassured these appointments will conclude next week.

“In conclusion, I do believe the cricket services department as well as the identified WPCA board members, under the leadership of the president, has offered much of their time to ensure our cricket season commences as planned despite the City challenges.

“We are in constant, almost daily, contact with the City and we will continue the collaborative approach, as it undoubtedly provides the best outcomes during this challenging period.

“I urge all clubs not to sow panic and establish the facts before resorting to, and spreading, rumours.”

Dien’s remarks are ostensibly another formal attempt to quieten sentiment that the start of the 2018-19 WPCA season will be delayed.

The 2017-18 WPCA club season ended prematurely, in January, due to severe water shortages in Cape Town and surrounds at the time.