Nic Kock will continue in his position as chairperson of the Sports Skills for Life Skills (SSLS). Picture: BackpagePix
Nic Kock will continue in his position as chairperson of the Sports Skills for Life Skills (SSLS). Picture: BackpagePix

Nic Kock quits Western Province cricket, citing ‘reckless trading’

By Zaahier Adams Time of article published Aug 4, 2020

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CAPE TOWN - Advocate Nic Kock stepped down as Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA) President at the organisation’s annual AGM on Monday evening, citing fears of “potential reckless trading”.

Kock, who succeeded current Cricket SA vice-president Beresford Williams term lasted 16 months – the shortest in WPCA history.

He is the latest member of the WPCA Executive Board to resign after independent directors Faghmiedah Petersen-Cook, Mustaq Brey, Mandla Mgogoshe, Suliman “Solly” Mahomed, Garth van Gensen and non-independent director Richard Noor all parted ways in recent months. The last remaining independent director Itumeleng Langeni also resigned on Monday evening.

It certainly has been a tumultuous period after the entire WPCA executive board was suspended last November by Cricket SA. The suspension was later overturned after an arbitration process issued their reinstatement after the WPCA had filed an urgent application against Cricket SA.

“The last few months have been ‘interesting’ to say the least,” Kock told IOL Sport. “I have always been passionate about serving this wonderful game of ours and strived to create an environment where we are able to change lives, but the reputational damage suffered as a consequence over the past months has been irreconcilable.

“Together with some of the board members that have recently resigned we believe that signing of the proposed lease agreements to the value of R12-million annually in the current economic climate could be perceived as reckless trading.”

The WPCA are in the midst of a R750-million building project at Newlands. The development should potentially consist of four new office blocks erected on the northern precinct of the stadium that is to be leased for office space.

Sanlam is the primary shareholder who provided 51% of the funding for the development, while the WPCA are responsible for the other 49%, which includes an outstanding loan of approximate R40-million to Cricket SA. The first phase of the development was expected to be concluded in December 2020 but has now been postponed to June 2021.

This was the result of the building process having come to a complete standstill for two months due to the Covid-19 enforced lockdown. Despite lockdown restrictions being eased over the ensuing months, the building capacity has resumed at only 30%.

The impact of the delay has the potential to financially cripple the WPCA with the cricket body expected to enter into a rental agreement with co-owners in the region of R12-million annually.

The situation has been exacerbated with Kock also serving as chief executive of WPCA after the retirement of the long-serving Nabeal Dien at the end of last season.

Furthermore, the WPCA are currently without a stadium rights sponsor, while World Sports Betting has also terminated their team sponsorship agreement with the Cape Cobras.

Kock will, though, not be lost entirely to cricket as he will continue in his position as chairperson of the Sports Skills for Life Skills (SSLS) non-profit organisation that helps previously disadvantaged students at the University of Western Cape to enhance their talent in sport whilst also providing the opportunity to obtain a tertiary education.

“I believe right now I am able to serve the game much more in this capacity, particularly during this highly-emotionally charged period our game is currently experiencing.

“Black lives have always mattered to us at UWC not only on the cricket field but in the classroom too and we will continue working more than ever now.”

@ZaahierAdams

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