Ntini takes on new CSA role in E.Cape

2011-05-24 00:00

CRICKET South Africa (CSA) yesterday announced that former Proteas fast bowler Makhaya Ntini will be the first CSA Cricket Development Ambassador.

The announcement was made during the unveiling of the newly renovated GB Molefe hostel, which houses the CSA Fort Hare Cricket Academy bursary players.

Ntini, who announced his retirement from international cricket last year, is excited to take this latest step in his crusade for the further development of cricket in rural Eastern Cape.

“I am very happy to continue working with CSA, but in this different avenue. I am very passionate about cricket, especially in the forgotten parts of South Africa in the rural areas like the one I come from,” said Ntini.

“This latest journey will allow me to continue spreading the word about cricket and bring the spotlight to the young boys and girls from the smaller areas in South Africa.”

Said CSA chief executive Gerald Majola, “Makhaya is a true ambassador of the sport. He has done more for the game of cricket than anybody in promoting the game. We are honoured as CSA that he is lending his name and his time to the development of cricket,”

“We have seen many stars come and go and we at CSA decided that when Makhaya Ntini retires, he cannot be gone completely from the world of cricket because many players still need to learn from his experience. This is why we believe that he is the perfect candidate for the post of Ambassador of Cricket Development,” Majola added.

Ntini will help CSA identify areas that need the most assistance to put developmental structures in place. He will also be an active talent scout in these areas to ensure that a steady flow of players come from the Eastern Cape.

He hailed the work that is being done by former Proteas fast bowler Mfuneko Ngam with the academy in Fort Hare.

“Mfuneko is one of the hardest- working foot soldiers of cricket in the Eastern Cape and the work that he has done with the academy needs to be commended. I look forward to working closely with him in the future,” he said.

The Fort Hare Cricket Academy, which was established in 2008, offers one of the most sought-after bursaries for aspiring cricketers in the Eastern Cape, giving players the opportunity to study as well as to be trained vigorously for the game of cricket.

Molefe House was built in 1932 and was revamped by CSA to give the academy players the opportunity to live under the same roof.

Majola also handed over cricket equipment to rural cricket teams on behalf of his long-time CSA friend, Dubai businessman Shyam Bhatia of Cricket for Care. Representatives from the rural teams were on hand to accept the kit.

Majola extended his thanks to Bhatia, who was unable to attend the event.

“Shyam is passionate about spreading the development of cricket throughout underprivileged areas worldwide but more specifically in the rural areas and I would like to thank him for his continued support of South African cricket and his generosity towards the development of the game.”

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