Advocate Nicolas Kock has been appointed unopposed as president of the Western Province Cricket Association (WPCA).
The decision was made at a special meeting of the WPCA general council at Newlands on Monday night, with Kock succeeding the long-serving Beresford Williams, who was recently elected vice-president of Cricket South Africa.
Kock has served with distinction on the board of WPCA for 13 years, of which eight years were as vice-president.
He is a lecturer at the Institute for Social Development at the University of Western Cape (UWC) and is also the executive director of the Sport Skills for Life Skills (SS4LS) programme of the UWC, a highly regarded initiative of holistic cricket, career and community development in South Africa.
Kock said it was a great honour to be appointed as president. ‘Growing up, I did not conceive that it was possible,’ he said.
‘The first one is the stadium development, which is probably in cricketing context the biggest in South African history that an association is attempting to embark on.
‘If we manage to pull it off, it will provide us with the cornerstone of sustainability for club cricket and cricket as a whole in the Western Cape region.
‘The second challenge is our municipal cricketing facilities and its maintenance. Some have already been closed down as they were drought-affected facilities.
‘The security and maintenance, coupled with the overuse of the club facilities affected their ability to function properly. We have to sit down with all stakeholders to get to an equitable solution that will benefit all stakeholders.’
Asked about the Cape Cobras and their quest for more trophies, he said: ‘The franchise is moving in the right direction. We came desperately close to winning the Four-Day Franchise trophy and have reached the semi-finals of the One Day Cup.
‘We have a dual desire – winning trophies and producing players for the national team. Zubayr Hamza and Janneman Malan earned national honours this season, an indication that our pipeline structures are in working order.
‘I think winning trophies is the result of striving to be the best you can be. If you want to win, you have to be in the top three of all the indicators nationally every time. We cannot be complacent.’
Nabeal Dien, chief executive officer of the WPCA, said: ‘Kock has waited in the wings as vice-president for many years and finally has the opportunity to take Western Province to greater heights.
‘He is an extremely level-headed thinker and dedicated professional who has been involved with community sport at UWC for many years and has assisted many students in education. He has a particular passion for education. We wish him well for the future.’
At the meeting, Dien hailed the enormous dedication of Beresford Williams and his unwavering commitment to the excellence of WPCA. He was honoured as ‘the grassroots president.’
In other WPCA board appointments, Ashraf Burns was appointed vice-president, and Dr De Vries Basson has been voted to the board as a non-independent director.
Burns is a dedicated and committed president of United Cricket Club. He has served on the board for many years and has a particular passion for club cricket.
Dr Basson was the local league’s chairman for 13 years and served with distinction in this capacity. Basson is head of internal medicine at the Karl Bremer Hospital.