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Farewell to the outgoing Central Gauteng Lions Board

Farewell to the outgoing Central Gauteng Lions Board
Farewell to the outgoing Central Gauteng Lions Board
©Central Gauteng Lions

The current Central Gauteng Lions (‘CGL’) board term in office ends at the forthcoming Annual General Meeting (‘AGM’).

“The termination of term is in line with the Members Council resolution. As the broader CGL family, we would like to thank the outgoing members of the board for their indelible and invaluable contribution towards the development of cricket in the Province.

A special gratitude to the outgoing CGL Chairperson and President Jack Madiseng for his excellent leadership over the past 7-years. The union made great strides in attaining its vision and mission and that is to create unrivalled passion for cricket and to advance and transform cricket in the province,” commented Jono Leaf-Wright, CGL CEO.

Madiseng said: “After 7-years at the helm and due to family related reasons, I have decided to step down as the CGL Chairperson and President and not avail myself for the election of the new board. I started as a CGL director in 2013 and was appointed as the Chairperson and President in 2016. I have enjoyed a fantastic journey with more wins than losses and wish to extend my humble thanks to, the Union, the current CGL Board, CGL Clubs, CGL staff, Lions Board and Gauteng Cricket Council for giving me the opportunity to be a  part of this great set up.

“I will always be part of the Unions’ DNA and will forever be grateful for the opportunity that was provided to me and my family. I will be available to contribute in some form or other wherever my input may be required. I would like to wish the Union all the best in its endeavours.”

After a tenuous 2017/18 season, the board adopted a long term turn-around strategy which was implemented in the 2018/19 fiscal to date. The strategy centred around six key pillars namely:

(1) Develop quality winning teams

(2) Ensure thriving club and school cricket

(3) Grow Fan Base

(4) Maintain the iconic stadium reputation

(5) Build a commercially successful and financially sustainable company

(6) Ensure good governance practices, excellent operational and performance culture.

A brief look at the performance of the board against set objectives reveals the following:

Develop quality winning teams

Imperial Lions retained the 4-Day series championship and finished second in the Momentum One-Day Cup. Won the last CSA T20 2018/19 tournament.

Imperial Lions former Head Coach Enoch Nkwe won the 2018/19 CSA and Gauteng Province Sport Head Coach of the year award and now serves as the Proteas Assistant Coach.

Seven Imperial Lions players flew the national flag as part of the Proteas set up in the past season with a few players winning various CSA awards in the 2018/19 season.

Women’s cricket is on the rise with a few CGL Women Senior Provincial players selected for national team.

CGL nurtures the current SA U19 Captain Bryce Parson who led the team during the recent ICC U19 World Cup.

In September 2018, Central Gauteng Lions won the 2018 Africa T20 Cup.

Jozi Stars, managed by the Central Gauteng Lions, won the inaugural Mzansi Super League tournament in December 2018.

Bethuel Buthelezi and Evan Flint jointly won the CSA best groundsmen in the country for the season 2018/19.

Gauteng Scorers Association won the scorers association of the year award for the 13th consecutive year in the 2019 CSA Awards.

Ensure thriving club and school cricket

The leadership leaves behind the biggest pipeline cricket structures in the country with over 300-affiliated schools.

The union has built key relations with universities offering on field, academic and financial support to multiple young talented players through a well-managed CGL Academy structure.

The U19 and Academy framework maintained the quality that comes from the Hubs and RPC, Traditional Schools, Area/Regional Programs and CGL Provincial Youth programs.

A special mention to the head coaches of U11/13 (Bryan Patel) and U15/17 (Bongani Ndaba) who have worked tirelessly to make sure that the CGL is placed at the top of elite junior youth age group cricket.

The 2019/20 U13 National week was rained off this year, however the U15 and U17 age groups can boast successful weeks winning 80% of their games. Players put in some impressive performances throughout those respective age groups.

The U19 Khaya Majola Week showed us that the CGL franchise is dominant throughout by winning 5 out of their 6 games at the week held at Michaelhouse, KZN Inland.

The cherry on top and a combination of hard work was the success of the Lions Cubs team winning the Franchise Cubs Week held in Stellenbosch at the beginning of this year.

Young talented girls took part in various cricket festivals across the country with good results achieved all around. Several players were invited to attend the Women’s National Camp.

CGL has an active and dedicated Members Council whichnot only provides CGL’s mandate and holds the board accountable but also assists in managing over 50-community based clubs offering various competitive men’s and women’s leagues in conjunction with a passionate and dedicated CGL team.

CGL is proud to be associated with the world renowned blind cricket team, competitive deaf cricket team, world-class scorers, dedicated umpire’s association, and the largest coaching structure.

Grow Fan Base

In 2017, the CGL board and management implemented an integrated brand campaign (#JoinTheCharge) that sought to align the three central Gauteng brands – Imperial Lions (formerly known as bizhub Highveld Lions), Central Gauteng Lions Senior Provincial Teams (Men and Women) and Central Gauteng Lions Board.

The campaign has been a success in terms of growing the fans base and is one of the most admired brands in the country as the Imperial Lions was voted as the 2019/2020 Gauteng Sport Team of the year.

According to Nielsen, Gauteng has the biggest fans base across the country. Sold out matches with PinkDay as a recognisable and most supported cause-marketing brand.

Maintain the iconic stadium reputation

The CGL board and management is proud to have maintained the stadium’s reputation as iconic and one of the world’s most sustainable stadia.

The board appointed the leading head groundsman in the country,, Evan Flint, with the aim to maintain the Imperial Wanderers Stadium’s on-field iconic reputation.

This was at the back of a substantial investment spent on upgrading stadium facilities and infrastructure including the upgrade of the media centre, lifts, seating, sun zone, scoreboard and nets amongst other facilities.

The Imperial Wanderers Stadium (formerly known as the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium) is proud to have hosted the former President of the United States,, Barack Obama on the 17th of July 2018 for the 16th Annual Nelson Mandela Lecture. The lecture was attended by Kings, Queens, World Leaders, Captain of Industries, and various members of our global society.

The stadium recently hosted the Prime Minister of Ethiopia in January 2020.

It is one of the few stadia to offer vegan and variety catering across all religious beliefs and food preferences.

Partnered with a global technology partner - Uber Rides and Uber Eats.

Stadium caterers for all audience groups - kids, families, students, young professionals, lifestyle based fans, connoisseurs, and GEN Z.

Hosted multiple non-cricket and other sporting codes events (lifestyle, conferences, workshops, photoshoots, weddings, kiddies’ parties, corporate family days etc).

Converted suites into corporate rental offices as well as co-working spaces. The stadium offers the best medical centre in town.

Build a commercially successful and financially sustainable company

The board leaves a commercially stable and sustainable entity. Well-managed reserves. Solid balance sheet. Global and impeccable sponsors and partners across various sectors of the economy (i.e. logistics, construction, mining, retail, hospitality, media, vehicle, e-haling etc).

Strong relations with various stakeholders – sponsors, partners, suppliers, various sporting bodies and public sector.

Ensure good governance, excellent operational and performance culture

The Union boasts one of the most transformed teams across all areas and levels - players, administration, associates, staff, management, executive, advisory panels in the form of various board sub-committees and the board.

Sound and good corporate governance practices are in place championed by various strong board sub-committees - audit, risk, remuneration, marketing, stadium, finance, cricket, and social ethics.

Attained clean audits throughout the board’s tenure.

An entity led by a high-calibre of board members who represented the full demographics of the country - race, gender, age group, academics and entrepreneurs with a sound policy framework and competitive strategies supported by stressed tested business continuity plans in place.

A team supported by a strong operational excellence and performance culture.

A board that supported various social investment programmes beyond its mandate with the aim of restoring human dignity. These initiatives covered health (e.g. PinkDay Breast Cancer Awareness), education (e.g. people living with autism) and sport development in general.

“The sustainability of the Union depends on the support from various stakeholders. On behalf of the outgoing board, I would like to thank each and every stakeholder starting with our mother body Cricket South Africa family, the ICC family, all CSA affiliated cricket union members in South Africa, regulators and sporting bodies especially the Gauteng Department of Sport, Arts, Culture & Recreation. A multitude of corporate partners and NGOs that have supported the Union over years. Former board members, lifetime members, EXCO members, staff, contractors, and fellow board members. All the schools, clubs, and universities. Our service providers and last but not all the fans that continue to support the Union, stadium, teams, and various initiatives,” commented Mr. Madiseng.

“We wish Mr Madiseng and the outgoing board the very best in their future endeavours and believe that they leave a valuable legacy for their replacement and very big shoes to fill,” concluded Mr. Leaf-Wright.

The CGL Union is due to host its AGM this Saturday 9 May with the appointment of new auditors and the election of a new board of Non-Independent Directors amongst other agenda items.

The selection of the five Independent Directors has gone through a rigorous process and once decided upon will join the seven new Non-Independent Directors to form a Board that will take CGL to new levels of excellence. 

Any Non-Independent Director that wishes to serve on the board would need to have been nominated by the clubs in a fair and transparent process in order to stand for election.