Highveld Lions batsman, Omphile Ramela, was appointed as the new President of the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA) at its annual general meeting of players held in Johannesburg on Friday 26 October 2018. He replaces JP Duminy whose term as SACA President came to an end at the meeting.
Ramela is an experienced and highly respected cricketer who has played a total of 238 first class, list A and domestic T20 matches over a nine-year professional career to date. He also holds a masters degree in economics and an honours degree in philosophy. His appointment is for an initial two-year term.
“We are very happy to have Omphile on board as our new President,” said Tony Irish, chief executive of SACA. “He has already served a number of years on our players executive committee and is familiar with the inner workings of the players association. I think it’s also worth mentioning that it is quite rare in this age of professional sport for a player to achieve the level of academic qualification that Omphile has while fully engaged as a professional cricketer. This is an indication of the calibre of the individual that we will have as a player leader in the organisation.”
Commenting on his appointment Ramela said “I am honoured that my fellow players elected me into this position. Having served on the SACA executive committee for a few years and deepened my understanding of the player issues dealt with I feel well prepared to serve the players’ interests as president of their association. SACA belongs to the players and is strongly supported by them at all levels. It’s very professional in the way it is run and it has strong player benefit programmes, including its Player Plus programme which educates and provides players with personal development and support services empowering them to prepare for life after cricket. SACA’s strength also lies in its diversity and ability to unify players on collective issues in South African cricket.”
The players at the meeting also elected Proteas player and Dolphins captain, Khaya Zondo, as a new member on the players executive committee. He joins existing committee members Stephen Cook (Proteas and Highveld Lions) and Farhaan Berhardien (Proteas and Titans). The committee will at its first meeting consider the co-option of two further members, one from the group of nationally contracted men players and one from the nationally contracted women players. Former Proteas womens captain, Mignon Du Preez has held the latter position over the last 12 months.
“I also take this opportunity of thanking JP for the time and effort put in by him over the last few years and I welcome Khaya to the players executive committee. I look forward to our co-option discussions which will take place shortly and will be aimed at ensuring that our women cricketers are also well represented around the players association table” said Irish. “The players remain critically important stakeholders in professional cricket and SACA will continue to ensure that they are well represented and have a strong collective voice in the game and on all key issues that affect them and their careers as cricketers.”