This is the third newsletter from President, Rob Vines about GCA activities.
While strong and effective operational management of the 2019/20 season continues, the Board is shifting its focus towards addressing the many big picture and longer-term planning issues affecting GCA cricket.
1. Season Start
The season has got off to a flying start with some high standard cricket, inspiring individual performances, and close finishes including a tie in the Division 1, 1st X1 competition between Grovedale & Murgheboluc.
There have been a number of centuries scored already, but three standout batting performances were Dylan Shelley’s (Corio CC) incredible 218, Daanish Mehta’s 183 (Murgheboluc CC) and Sam Hall’s (NGCC) 150 in the Divisions 3 and 1 (respectively) 1st X1 competitions.
There have been many notable bowling performances including Danny Hughes (Lara CC) 8/35 and Nick Lynch (SBCC) 7/30 in the Division 1, 1st X1 competition.
The 1-day (40 over) competition has commenced and is an important reminder on how vital these competitions are to providing a range of cricket opportunities for all standards, and to building player depth for all clubs.
2. Great Clubs
I’m very fortunate as GCA President to visit clubs throughout the season and see the hard work that goes on everywhere to provide great club communities, enjoyable cricket opportunities for all, and of course to meet the wonderful administrators and characters that put in so many volunteer hours.
Irrespective of the competition standard and type of cricket played, we have wonderful clubs and so many committed people throughout the GCA community, and we need to constantly thank and celebrate their efforts.I was a guest at the recent North Geelong Cricket Club 140th birthday event, which was a fantastic evening of celebration and reminiscing. I observed again the happiness and joy that being part of a great club brings to everyone involved and I know that this is replicated across all GCA clubs.
3. Strategic Planning Program
GCA Board members and club representatives attended the first strategic planning workshop on 16th October hosted at the Newtown & Chilwell Cricket Club.The Board engaged a professional facilitator, Craig Biddiscombe, to manage the workshop. The workshop focus was:* Strategic challenges and goals for GCA cricket.
* The relationship between the GCA Board and member clubs.
The workshop demonstrated the energy and appetite that exists across the GCA community to bring new collective thinking to the many issues that challenge the future of GCA cricket, and to developing an agreed strategic plan to provide context and direction to decision making around more detailed matters.A second workshop with broader club and stakeholder participation is being arranged for late November.
4. 2019/20 GCA Budget
Over the last 4 years the GCA Board decided to run deficit budgets to reduce the Association’s reserve fund and moderate club costs. The reserve fund has reduced to the targeted level and the Board recently adopted a more balanced budget for the 2019/20 season reflecting a shift in GCA budget strategy.
The budget incorporates a range of responsible savings measures, including the decision not to pay Board member honorariums this season.The GCA budget position is sound but highlights the need to identify new revenue streams to keep club contributions to manageable levels and position the Board to consider worthy strategic projects of benefit to GCA cricket.5. Good GovernanceThe Board is turning its attention to a range of medium-term projects to improve the governance of GCA cricket. These include:
* Any further beneficial refinements to the GCA constitution following adoption of a new model rules constitution a few years ago.
* A review of the GCA By-Laws particularly to address the lack of independence in appeal processes.
* A comprehensive and holistic review to modernise the GCA playing regulations and address a range of deficiencies.
* An overhaul of the club assessment system and criteria.
The Board is currently discussing the priority, scope and timeframe for these projects and more information will be forthcoming.The implementation of any governance improvements by the Board will only occur following thorough engagement with member clubs and all relevant stakeholders.
6. G21 Cricket Strategy
Discussions are continuing with Cricket Victoria, and Cricket Associations regarding the next steps in the implementation of the adopted G21 Cricket Strategy, with respect to the development of a new governance model and structure for cricket in the wider Barwon Region.The discussions are focusing on the formation and composition of a local advisory group to consider all relevant issues and provide recommendations to the Cricket Victoria Community Cricket Committee and Board on any governance changes that should be made.It’s hoped that that this process will gather momentum and begin to move forward with more urgency.
A further meeting with interested clubs was held on 16 October to finalise details for the inaugural Barwon Women’s Cricket Competition.Many clubs are using social media to promote their teams, and with affiliations due soon, the final number of teams and shape of the competition will be known.A season launch is scheduled for 10 November with more details to be provided.Playing rules and regulations have been thoroughly discussed with some final refinements to be settled.There has been positive discussion about the opportunity to play the women’s competition final in conjunction with the men’s T20 competition finals in the new year.
8. Captains & Umpires Forum
The merit of convening regular club captains and umpires’ forums has been discussed with the Geelong Cricket Umpires Association to clarify expectations, build healthy relationships and discuss issues around playing regulations.The first forum is being arranged prior to the mid- season break and more information will be provided in due course.Yours in cricketRob Vines PresidentGeelong Cricket Association M: 0407 332 321E: firstname.lastname@example.org