Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 24th 2013 Contents "There is no broken
business." That was
the only defiant state-
ment at Haroon Lor-
gat s unveiling on
Monday and it was uttered by someone who
should know. Louis von Zeuner is one of
CSA s independent board members and is
also a banker. From his vantage point, there
is nothing ailing CSA and when browsing
the books it s hard to argue with von Zeuner s
Over the last two years, CSA has signed an
eight-year broadcast deal with Taj and Wil-
lowton TV worth R1.5 billion (US$150 million).
The last revenue figure they released was after
the 2010-11 season when they reported a record
R727.4 million (US$72.74 million) income. They
have high-profile corporate sponsors attached
to each of the three formats and all domestic
competitions so financially, CSA is strong and
But a business is not only about money and
that is what von Zeuner forgot when he made
his declaration. A business is also about rela-
tionships and at the moment, CSA s most
important one is fractured.
The South African public still harbours sus-
picion towards the organisation, justifiably so
in the aftermath of the bonus scandal, which
revealed a lack of corporate governance in the
body and the continued series of PR blunders
which followed. CSA has not done a good job
of explaining things to the people they should
be accountable to---the supporters---be it the
delay in appointing a new CEO or whether a
player has passed or failed a fitness test and
so they have earned nothing but circumspec-
tion. It is Haroon Lorgat s job to change that.
Just the fact that he was appointed is a good
start for CSA s beleaguered reputation. In Lor-
gat, CSA has picked a familiar and trusted
face. He spent almost a decade working in
various positions in South African cricket before
appointed ICC boss. His rise is an example of
how a traditional cricket-person---Lorgat is a
former allrounder with a decent record---can
combine corporate acumen.
He is the only convenor of selectors since
readmission to leave the job with the same
amount of respect he had when he started it.
Perhaps he was lucky in that the choices he
had to make were not as confusing as the
crossroads other convenors stood in front of,
particularly when it came to established players
In Lorgat s era, Makhaya Ntini was at his
peak and Herschelle Gibbs allegations of a
Graeme Smith-Jacques Kallis-Mark Boucher-
AB de Villiers cabal were not fully formed (de
Villiers was only a rookie at the start of that
period) or released. But he also made brave
decisions like dropping Boucher in late 2004
and giving Hashim Amla his debut the same
year and that added to his stature.
His time at the ICC did the same. South
Africans are proud that one of their own headed
up world cricket s governing body. They see
Lorgat as a man of great prestige. The other
side of the story---the one which alleges Lorgat
was skating on thin ice towards the end of his
tenure---has not reached these parts. And Lor-
gat s battles with the BCCI are considered a
case of the Indian board flexing their muscles
against a man who was strong enough to stand
up to them.
It s no secret that some view the BCCI as
a bully because of their money and influence.
When, in March they voiced their concerns
over Lorgat s bid for the CSA job, it came with
a threat of a possible pull-out of their upcoming
tour. The BCCI s beef was believed to be
because of some of their old baggage with
Lorgat, emanating from disagreements at the
ICC, but South Africans saw it as unwarranted
interference. That CSA appointed Lorgat
regardless of the BCCI s concerns has been
received as an act of bravado. CSA has been
congratulated for holding the line where other
boards may have caved in.
While the board puffed its chest out with
pride that they had made a popular decision,
Lorgat emerged almost apologetically into the
limelight. At his first press engagement, he
spoke on the India issue with humility. He said
he did not know exactly what he had done to
earn their ire and he wanted to understand
their concerns. He also gave an assurance he
would be willing to say sorry to India because
maintaining close ties with him is in the best
interests of CSA.
Therein also lies Lorgat s biggest challenge.
He will have to find equilibrium between head-
ing up CSA in a way that is credible to the
South African public while also keeping peace
and fostering relationships with other boards.
In essence, Lorgat will have to be a diplomat.
Fortunately for him that is something he has
had a lot of practice doing.
With one eye on international image and
the other at restoring CSA s reputation at home,
Lorgat will also need a third, to scan over the
intricacies of running South African cricket.
The main protagonists, the players, cannot be
ignored. South Africa s Test squad appear to
be able to take care of themselves and the lim-
ited-overs units seem the problem children
but it is not that clear cut.
South Africa s golden generation are slowly
being affected by injury and age as Graeme
Smith s ankle recurrences have come too fre-
quently and Jacques Kallis accepts the twilight.
Even the usually fit Dale Steyn has begun to
pick up niggles. As we ve seen recently with
India and Australia, a succession plan needs
to be watertight for a country not to feel the
losses of some heavyweights. South Africa s
depth exists but when it is severely tested, as
has happened with the one-day side now, it s
evident there is work to be done.
The franchises have continually produced
players who are capable of stepping up but
they have oft-cried for assistance. They rely
on CSA for grants and many of them would
like those to increase. The domestic Twenty20
competition is an avenue they want to further
monetise with players with a worldwide appeal
to draw in advertisers to match.
CSA do not want to compete with the IPL,
that would be pointless, but they would prefer
something like the Big Bash League instead of
the low-profile event they are saddled with
And to make Lorgat s job a little more dif-
ficult, he also has to pay attention to devel-
opment. In a country with a past as divided
as South Africa s, addressing inequality is com-
plicated. Transformation is associated with
fast-tracking players of colour but it is not as
unfair as that. As a policy it looks at making
opportunities to play cricket available to all
people and, by implication, those who were
previously disadvantaged require more atten-
It is often criticised because it is applied
higher-up at the same time as it takes root at
the lowest-levels. Many would prefer to see
real change at grassroots long before it grows
elsewhere because they believe that will allow
for real change. But others have growing impa-
tience about the slow rate of representation.
Unity took place 22 years ago and to date
only five black Africans, who make the majority
of the population - Makhaya Ntini, Mfuneko
Ngam, Thami Tsolekile, Monde Zondeki and
Lonwabo Tsotsobe---have played Test cricket
despite black African communities having cen-
tury-long traditions in the game. Lorgat himself
said he feels South Africa is not benefitting
fully by failing to tap into this talent pool and
he wants to change that.
Von Zeuner may be strictly correct: by the
traditional understanding of a business, CSA
is not broken. But by the larger one, it has
holes. If Lorgat can fill some of them, his time
in charge will be judged successful. (ESPN-
• Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
Holes to fill at CSA
Makhaya Ntini waves to the
crowd during his last
international match for South
Africa against India in a
Twenty20 match in Durban.
Without a superstar like
Makhaya Ntini, transformation
will be an issue Haroon Lorgat
will need to address.
(PHOTO COURTESY ESPNCRICINFO)
MADRID---Real Madrid president
Florentino Perez says Cristiano
Ronaldo will end his career with the
Spanish giants and has denied re-
ceiving any bids for the Portugal for-
Manchester United fans long for
the return of Ronaldo, whom the
English club sold to Madrid for a
record 80 million pounds (then $131
million) in 2009.
Perez says in yesterday s edition of
French newspaper L Equipe that
"Real Madrid revolves around him,"
adding "I can assure you he will end
his sports career here. We have not
received any offers for him."
Despite scoring plenty of goals,
Ronaldo has had off-field problems
at Madrid and recently acknowledged
he misses the Premier League.
There is a 1 billion euro ($1.5 billion)
buy-out clause in Ronaldo s contract,
which runs until 2015. (AP)
Madrid president: Ronaldo to end career at club
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