Graeme Smith (Getty Images)
- South Africa Cricket Director Graeme Smith said the bidding process to determine where teams will participate in the new national structure next season is underway.
- The six-team franchise system in place since the 2003/04 season will be replaced by a 15-team configuration.
- The 15 teams will be divided into two divisions of eight and seven in a manner similar to the English county cricket division which came into being in 2000.
While the men’s team is still on a journey of soul-searching after a tough Pakistani series, there still remains the important issue of the national restructuring that will change the shape of cricket in South Africa.
South African Cricket Director of Cricket Graeme Smith, whose hands have been taken over the cancellation of the Australian Series and the need to close the gap between March and early April with cricket, said the Switching from the six-team franchise setup to the 15-team union next season from an auction standpoint is underway.
He was also confident that the new system would be in place for the 2021/22 season.
The decision, contentious which has been in the works since last year, was announced on January 1 where the unions, according to the press release from CSA at the time, “will be evaluated on the basis of its performance, both current and historical, against a defined evaluation criteria, as well as its strategic plan to manage and maintain a professional team within this new professional era at the affiliate member level. ‘
The 15 teams will be divided into eight and seven teams respectively with a promotion / relegation system similar to that of English County Cricket. The auction system will determine who goes where in the two divisions.
“I played a role in this process, although there are other team members involved in the process, but the bidding process for these teams is underway at the moment. There is currently a deployment for the bidding process, procurement, set-up. It’s currently underway and if we can achieve all of our goals then I don’t see why this start wouldn’t be the case, ”Smith said.
“CSA defined the criteria from the start, which is why there is a tendering process. Franchises will have to respond to it and CSA has done so successfully in the Mzansi Super League. At the end of this process there will be some disappointment for some unions as everyone wants to be in the top eight to start. The team has worked very hard when it comes to what is required of a top franchise which is why there is a competitive bidding process. The process is stressful for CSA and we need to do it right and take it very seriously. “
One of the startup issues could be hiring players for the different federations, as not all players on national teams can fit into some of the major franchises.
The Titans and Lions provide the bulk of the national team’s players and also have excellent senior national professionals who complement when the national activists are absent.
While Smith said the CSA needed to work out all the details at a later stage, he also said they had consulted with the South African Cricketer’s Association on the finer contract and tax details.
“It’s a complicated thing and it has been defined. The best thing to do now is for CSA to issue a press release detailing all of these things. We talked to Saca in regards to the procurement and the structure, the funds and down to each plan how the details are going to look like. To give a good document, CSA will have to spell it all out in a release rather than giving you chunks, ”Smith said.