14 August 2018

South Africa: T20 Global League Saga Drags On With Another Rant

The messy aftermath of the failed T20 Global League refuses to disappear, with the owners of the Bloemfontein City Blazers launching another attack in Cricket South Africa's (CSA) direction.

The tournament was due to be launched late last year, but it was cancelled at the last hour when the CSA board pulled the plug amidst financial concerns and the absence of a broadcast deal.

The eight owners, who had invested heavily to be a part of the tournament, were placed on stand-by as CSA went about figuring out the future of the tournament.

Now, over 9 months later, CSA has announced plans to partner with SuperSport and launch a new-look, six-franchise competition.

The original owners, however, do not know where they stand while CSA CEO Thabang Moroe has been looking to meet with as many of them as possible.

The latest statement from Sushil Kumar, the chairman of City Sports Limited, is a scathing one.

Full Bloem City Blazers statement:

"We at City Sports have a wonderful relationship with the FSCU officials in Bloemfontein as well as the Consulate of South Africa in Hong Kong. We had a number of plans as a Bloemfontein franchise with regard to development at the grass roots and schools, investments in upgrading facilities in schools etc. As of now our position vis-a-vis CSA and private ownership is in a limbo. Some of the owners want to go legal and claim damages and compensation. We are still contemplating our future course of action. There is a general feeling of the owners being taken for a ride...including us. I can assure our second home Bloemfontein that City Sports will continue and explore ways to work with the FSCU officials for mutual benefit.

With regard to the meeting in Bombay, a couple of questions to CSA had no satisfactory answers:

1. When there were three separate proposals to take over the league and run the same, which would have been a win-win, why were they not considered?

2. SuperSport was the reason for the league to be postponed in the first place. What prompted CSA to sleep with the same enemy and part with a stake of 49%?

3. Lastly, we have information from the Govt point of view that no details of the financial deal with SuperSport is available. There is a lack of transparency there."

The statement then accused CSA and SuperSport had ignored government's wishes to attract foreign investment into the competition.

"Finally, CSA promised that they will get back to the Board and seek their approval to offer a first right of refusal to existing owners in case they decide to privatise the league. The decision of the board will be conveyed to the owners within ten days," it concluded.

Source: Sport24

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