The owners of City Sports have lashed out at Cricket South Africa over their handling of the scrapped Global T20 League and the formation of a new league in partnership with Supersport.
City Sports questioned Cricket South Africa’s decision to join in partnership with the very company that effectively held up the hosting of the inaugural Global T20 League scheduled for 2017.
In a statement issued to the press Chairman of City Sports Sushil Kumar expressed his dissatisfaction with how Cricket South Africa have dealt with prospective investors who had committed themselves to involvement in the league.
Kumar said in the 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.”
Cricket South Africa held a meeting with the investors who had signed on to be franchise owners in the Global T20 League in Bombay.
According to Kumar the meeting left the investors still unclear on where they stand with Cricket South Africa.
He said: “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.”
City Sports have questioned CSA’s reasoning that the Ministry of Sport advised them to switch to a privately owned tournament, claiming their sources in government have no knowledge of such a consultation taking place.
He went on: “The Board Director Iqbal Khan mentioned that the Ministry of Sport had conveyed to go without Private Ownership and the other director Louis von Zeuner concurred.
“According to our sources in the Government, no one in the Government has any clue regarding CSA’s deal with Supersport.
“Again, from a Governments perspective when foreign investment is encouraged esp. from HK and China, how come CSA has gone ahead and ruled out the model. The surprising reason given by CSA was that “Stakeholders of CSA do not want any Private Ownership” which personally I feel is unbelievable.
“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.”