It is a challenging time for Australian cricket and the events in South Africa will continue to have ramifications for some time.
It is clear, however, that we must not only develop and grow the game, we need to protect it.
It was a busy summer for South Australian cricket, with some outstanding results on and off the field.
The Adelaide Strikers’ first BBL championship win, record Adelaide Oval attendances for the best Test match of the Ashes series, high levels of Australian representation and the opening of a new $10 million sport pavilion and Karen Rolton Oval have been some of the highlights.
Congratulations to Strikers coach Jason Gillespie, captain Travis Head, the squad and all the staff involved in the win.
We were so proud to host both our BBL and WBBL semi-finals here at Adelaide Oval in early February. Unfortunately, our WBBL team, playing its first ever semi-final, lost to the Sydney Sixers – who went on to win the title.
But after surviving a last-ball thriller in the semi-final, our BBL side played magnificently in the final two days later, with Jake Weatherald’s record knock of 115 helping the side set a new team record score of 202, enough to beat the Hobart Hurricanes.
Off-field was also hugely successful for the Strikers. We had the biggest average crowds of the eight BBL teams (41,463 at Adelaide Oval), took the first BBL and WBBL games to the Northern Territory, signed Vodafone as a new major sponsor for both our BBL and WBBL teams, set new online records and continued to provide a competition-leading fan experience.
Adelaide Oval’s long-standing record for a day of Test cricket was toppled on the opening Saturday when 55,317 fans came through the turnstiles. By the end of the match, the Bodyline Test aggregate record of 172,361 had also been beaten with 199,147 attending across the five days.
State team success is a priority but we also want our players pushing for national selection.
Scorpions Amanda-Jade Wellington, Megan Schutt and Ash Gardner have been in India in March as part of Australia’s winning one-day and T20 sides and earlier this season Tahlia McGrath made her Test debut in the Ashes series.
Travis Head, Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson also represented Australia at one-day and T20 level and were joined for the first time by wicketkeeper Alex Carey, while Chadd Sayers at last received his first Baggy Green cap when he made his well-deserved Test debut in South Africa.
The recent opening of the new $10 million community sport pavilion at Park 25 adjacent to the upgraded main ground, now named Karen Rolton Oval, is a shining example of what can be achieved with wise investment in cricket’s future.
It is a magnificent facility and an asset that will benefit all levels of the game from underage, school, community, and country cricket through to Premier Cricket, our high performance and State programs, to our WBBL and BBL teams.
Finally, I hope by now you are aware that in June members will get the chance to vote on a new SACA constitution and legal structure – one designed to provide a strong foundation for the next 10 years and beyond.
Members provided a clear direction at the 2017 AGM that governance reform is not only required but is strongly supported.
The principles proposed in a special resolution at the 2017 AGM, together with many other contemporary changes, have been reflected in a draft new constitution that is now available for your consideration.
We’d love to hear your views and insights about the future of South Australian cricket before we ask you to vote. Please find out more at yoursaca.com.au
Enjoy this edition of Stumps!
SACA Chief Executive