South Africa to introduce two-division league system in its domestic structure

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South African domestic cricket is about to endure a significant overhaul with the introduction of a two-division league structure that can see 9 extra groups being added to the present six in the franchise system.

This follows a call by the Members’ Council of Cricket South Africa to settle for the suggestions of the David Richardson Task Team to restructure the domestic sport.

According to CSA, the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA) has been consulted concerning the method, which began in February 2020.

“The resolution to accept and approve Richardson Committee’s recommendation to restructure the domestic competition is the culmination of a process over many years. It heralds a new era for CSA and its affiliates,” mentioned Acting CSA Members’ Council President Rihan Richards.

“The support that the resolution received indicates the buy-in from all the stakeholders and a commitment to strengthening South African cricket. We really hope that the system will improve not only access and opportunity at all levels but will contribute to a sustainable CSA and the game,” Richards added.

The choice comes at a time when CSA is embattled each financially due to followers not being allowed at cricket matches due to COVID-19 pandemic and from an administrative viewpoint, as virtually all board members and senior officers both left or have been dismissed in the previous yr.

Sponsors have additionally withdrawn amid an deadlock with authorities which led to the Sports Minister intervening to resolve the disaster, with an interim board now in place.

Under the brand new structure, the present six-team franchise cricket make-up can be dissolved and changed by a 15-team first-class system, though CSA has not but specified a date for the change.

The format will see the groups cut up 8-7 right into a Division 1 and Division 2 association with computerized promotion and relegation to be applied.

“This automatic promotion and relegation system aims to provide healthy tension in the system which will enhance a high-performance environment, while providing opportunity for those Division 2 Members, who want to be part of a competitive first division,” the CSA mentioned.

“The 8-7 divisional split will be determined by a ‘bid process’ in which each member will be evaluated based on its performance, both current and historical, against defined evaluation criteria, as well as its Strategic Plan for running and sustaining a professional team,” CSA mentioned.

This will embrace an improved contract system, a rise in the quantity and high quality of alternatives in addition to an enchancment of management expertise inside CSA’s teaching constructions.

The proposed competitors structure will provide extra alternatives to gamers on the highest first-class domestic degree, basically widening the expertise pool for the nationwide selectors, the CSA mentioned.

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