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Western Province Cricket Association launch legal action against Cricket SA

Cricket South Africa chief executive Thabang Moroe (L) and president Chris Nenzani (R) are faced with a number of challenges.
Cricket South Africa chief executive Thabang Moroe (L) and president Chris Nenzani (R) are faced with a number of challenges.
Image: Lee Warren/Gallo Images

Already in legal trouble with their own players‚ Cricket South Africa (CSA) are now being taken to court by one of their major affiliates.

The Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA) board said in a release on Saturday they had lodged an urgent application in the Johannesburg High Court to “immediately interdict [CSA] from implementing or executing upon what WPCA considers to be an unlawful decision taken by CSA to exercise step in rights in respect of WPCA”.

CSA‚ the WPCA release said‚ had “no right or entitlement to exercise step-in rights over a self-standing voluntary association‚ being WPCA”.

The national body had also “not complied with the provisions of its own memorandum of incorporation”‚ “did not afford WPCA a hearing prior to taking the impugned decision”‚ and “took the decision based on an incorrect and inaccurate factual basis”.

That follows CSA’s decision‚ announced on September 22‚ to put the WPCA under administration.

CSA have loaned the WPCA approximately R81m to help finance a major construction project at Newlands.

Apparently CSA called in the debt after‚ TimesLIVE understands‚ a breakdown in communication between the two organisations.

Another theory that has been speculated on as to on what prompted CSA’s action is that the development at the ground‚ which could be worth up to R800m‚ would make the WPCA less financially dependent on CSA.

In the throes of the impasse CSA chief executive Thabang Moroe said the New Year Test‚ the showpiece of the South African season and usually played at Newlands‚ might have to be moved over safety questions raised by the construction.

Moroe has since said the “readiness of the stadium is on track” and that CSA were “gearing up to host [the match] at Newlands as planned”.

And despite their court application the WPCA said they remained “committed to pursuing a mediation process” with CSA.

But the WPCA shouldn’t hold their breath that anything will happen soon.

CSA were a month late in filing their responding papers when the South African Cricketers’ Association took legal action against them‚ in May‚ over a plan to restructure the domestic game that could lead to job losses.

Asked for comment on the WPCA’s claims‚ CSA did not immediately respond.