Betway T20 Challenge
Betway T20 Challenge: participating teamsCape Cobras 2 Dolphins 1 Imperial Lions 4 Knights cricket team 0 North West cricket team 0 Titans cricket team 7 Warriors cricket team 1 Western Province cricket team 0
Betway T20 Challenge: domestic tournament of Twenty20 cricket in South Africa
The Betway T20 Challenge tournament was recently organized in South Africa, and local teams compete here in the Twenty20 format. The Betway betting company has sponsored the tournament since 2021. The tournament was first held in the 2003/2004 season and had been gaining popularity ever since. Let’s talk about it in more detail.
Foundation and history of the tournament
Even though this championship was established quite recently, it has already changed its name several times. Until the 2010/2011 season, this tournament was called the Standard Bank Pro20 Series, then it was renamed the MiWay T20 Challenge, but under this name, it lasted only one season, 2011/12. After that, the tournament was called the RamSlam T20 Challenge until 2016, and then, until 2021, the CSA T20 Challenge.
In 2021, the betting company Betway became the tournament’s sponsor, and the name was once again changed to the modern one – Betway T20 Challenge.
From the 2008/2009 season to the 2013/2014 season, this tournament was one of the qualifying rounds for the Champions League Twenty20.
Six teams from South Africa have participated in the tournament since its inception except for the 2007/2008 season. A team from Zimbabwe also participated in the competition.
Due to the high costs of cricket tournaments, which the country’s leaders could hardly afford, it was decided that the 2018/19 season would be the last one for the CSA T20 Challenge. The franchise-based Mzansi Super League replaced it.
The competition got a second chance thanks to an unpleasant event: the coronavirus pandemic. The ten-day competition was resumed in 2019 as a round tournament, replacing the Mzansi Super League, canceled due to COVID-19.
Betway T20 Challenge now
The tournament was held from 19 to 28 February at Kingsmead Stadium (Durban) in 2021. The winner was the Lions team (coach – Wandile Gwavu). In the final, they defeated the Hollywoodbets Dolphins, taking four wickets, with Kagiso Rabada and Reeza Hendricks playing key roles in winning the title.
During the tournament, 17 matches were played, much less than the number planned at the beginning. The fact is that the Hollywoodbets Dolphins team won five of the first five matches, and thanks to this, they took the first line of the standings and automatically received a ticket to the final. The Lions, who eventually won the title, was second in the ranking of teams.
The organizers and sponsors have high hopes for this tournament, predicting that it will become a real hit over time, as all the South Africa national cricket team players play here.
The Betway Twenty20 Championship is a recent creation, and fans, organizers and sponsors have high hopes for it. It is important to remember that regional tournaments, including those in the Twenty20 format, are often just a stepping stone for talented players on their way to international competition. The South Africa national cricket team is a member of the ICC in all three international cricket formats.
But the current system of cricket competitions and teams in South Africa is extremely unstable at the moment. In April 2021, it was reported that Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa was seriously considering stripping the Cricket South Africa (CSA) – the organization that currently oversees cricket at the country level – of its existing powers. It will also affect the Betway T20 Challenge. Talk about this has been going on for a long time, And the discussion has entered a new round now.
It all started in 2017 after the failure of the T20 Global Leauge when Thabang Moroe replaced Haroon Lorgat as CSA’s CEO. When Thabang Moroe ran the organization, she faced many crises, including conflict with the South African Cricketers Association and management problems. It was subsequently revealed that Moroe spent large sums of money and was involved in financial fraud. Moroe was removed, as were some of the CSA board members that appointed him.
However, the organization still deals with the aftermath of Moroe’s tenure in power. In particular, on the agenda is the question of who sits on the board of directors and the members’ council CSA, which are the highest governing bodies of the organization and can appoint directors.
In connection with this situation, Sports Minister Nathi Mthethwa decided to intervene in the activities of the CSA and is seriously considering the possibility of depriving the organization of all powers to prevent the problems that South Africa has already faced in the future.
It will mean that South Africa’s participation in the ICC tournaments will be suspended for the time being – until the new organization confirms its credentials. It will also complicate and possibly temporarily pause regional events, including the Betway Twenty20 Challenge.