Picture: 123RF/ALLAN SWART
Picture: 123RF/ALLAN SWART

Though Cricket SA’s revenue has plummeted from R1bn to R512m, the organisation is pleased with how it has managed to reduce expenditure.

This was said by Mark Rayner, chair of the Cricket SA finance and commercial committee, in presenting a summary of its unqualified financial report.

The organisation is a liquid and going concern, Rayner said. “The business will reflect a R221m loss for the year‚” he said. 

Cricket SA is one of few organisations to have avoided salary cuts and retrenchments due to the pandemic. The loss is not far off the R180m that the organisation had budgeted to lose in the financial year.

“To summarise the Covid-19 impact‚ the impact in income was significant. You can imagine our broadcast and sponsorship income took a knock with a lack of cricket being played. But we are pleased with the way the organisation has been able to react and mitigate the impact and bring the expenses down.

“We did see an impact on our broadcasting rights and sponsorships and I am pleased to say the team has seen green shoots of sponsorship interest after a difficult couple of years....

“Like all the other organisations in the world we have been unable to escape the effects of Covid-19‚” said Rayner.

Cricket SA’s financial model works on a four-year cycle in which money is made off tours such as to or from India‚ Australia and England. It sometimes runs at a loss when other teams visit SA.

“The organisation has reacted swiftly in reducing its expenditure accordingly and our expenses have dropped from R1.2bn down to R700m.

“We have managed to try to mitigate that impact as swiftly and expeditiously as we can in response to the revenue loss. There still is cash in the balance sheet of R121m and‚ importantly‚ investments that will mature in the short term. So we are very close to cash of a further R363m.”

Cricket SA’s coffers were also affected in March 2020 when the Proteas men’s tour to India was postponed and England abandoned their tour of SA with three ODIs to play‚ citing what seemed unreasonable Covid-19 related excuses.

The situation was worsened when Australia postponed their inbound tour in 2020.

Cricket SA improved from a R200m loss for the 2018/2019 financial year to a R50m profit in the 2019/2020 financial year.

Cricket SA board chair Lawson Naidoo said the board has hit the ground running and has already held 14 meetings since it came into office on June 22.

“We are single-minded in our resolve to ensure the trust that has been invested in us is to turn around the fortunes of Cricket SA [is justified]‚” said Naidoo. “We came into an organisation that requires an overhaul and to achieve this we have had to systematically identify and dissect the weaknesses while simultaneously attending to a number of urgent matters.”

Sports minister Nathi Mthethwa, who attended the annual meeting, congratulated the organisation’s leadership.

“Cricket SA in my opinion‚ by example and influence‚ has embraced its responsibility to shape the organisation into one of the foremost best-practice models in so far as governance is concerned within the SA sports movement‚” said Mthethwa.

“Putting cricket and cricketers first is now being normalised and very soon the whole country will resume its seat among the international family of cricket nations.”

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