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JOHANNESBURG - Cricket SA (CSA) has added five new facilities to its Hub and Regional Performance Centre (RPC) program, after its board of directors approved the new facilities in line with a growth strategy, which will see them increase the training centres by five each year over the next four years.
The new facilities – the Sedibeng Hub (Gauteng), the Botshabelo Hub (Free State), Lichtenburg Hub (North West), New Brighton United Hub (Eastern Cape) and the King William’s Town Hub (Border) – have been awarded their Hub status after meeting CSA’s criteria.
CSA’s process to determine which areas qualify to get an additional hub was exhaustive and based on the following criteria: members receiving application notification via their amateur managers to start the application process for additional Hubs/RPCs; applicants’ existing Hubs/RPCs functioning optimally and driving programme objectives; the newly identified Hubs/RPCs must already have suitably qualified coaches, an adequate facility and management structure – and satisfy feeder (primary and secondary schools) requirements including girls/women and previously disadvantaged communities.
Statistics South Africa also assisted in the awarding process by conducting a survey with CSA which advised the governing body, in terms of population dynamics and socio-economic matters.
Corrie Van Zyl, CSA’s general manager of cricket said that the Hubs will be operational as of June 1.
He said that there had been a need for more Hubs and RPCs, which have produced an impressive 138 junior provincial players in the three years, to be introduced, as there were discrepancies among the provinces in terms of how many facilities they had compared to one another.
“We met with government, with whom we are in partnership, and their main concern is the need for us to have a bigger presence in all the provinces,” he said.
“Over the next four years we’re going to grow by five hubs a year, and the board has approved the budget for that. Although we are looking to grow to improve access within the pipeline, we will at the same time be consolidating our efforts within this programme to attend to the quality.”
Van Zyl said after spending the last three years working on getting the structures right to produce the talent, the focus is now shifting to the quality of the programme.
He said: “We believe that we are now at a stage that we have the structures in place and that our focus must be on the quality of these structures and the coaching, as we need to produce quality players.
“We are doing our research on player performances and monitoring and analysing the performances of our Hubs and RPC players, who participate in the national youth cricket weeks.”