I had the opportunity to sit down with Mr. Audley Thomas, Director of the Clarendon Cricket Board on the 22nd of February, he gave some insight into the JCA Senior Cup. Mr. Fitz Harris, Second Vice President of the Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) was kind enough to shed additional light on what Mr. Thomas and I spoke about earlier this month. He also shared some positive (for Tallawahs fans) views on the current situation surrounding the Tallawahs franchise. Needless to say, he also had a few words on the CWI presidential election which takes place on March 24th.
All things Senior Cup
In describing his role Mr Thomas said;
I am a (one of four) director on the Clarendon Cricket Board. I have been a director for over two years. We administer Clarendon Cricket. Our duty is to deal with various aspects of cricket for Clarendon. So, we have the Senior Cup team, which is the senior team, the Junior Cup team as well as administering kiddy cricket.
How does one get drafted into the Senior Cup team (for which there is no age limit)?
Prior to the competition, they would have had trial matches and based on performances, they (players) would have been selected.
How many rounds of competition are there before the knockout stages?
There are about twenty-four (24) teams; teams are in zones. They are placed in zones by the JCA. So, from the Clarendon zone there are about six (6) teams.
Is there a limit on the number of players called up from each Senior Cup team?
There are selectors who select players based on their performances. So, for example; Clarendon, St Catharine Parish and St. Catharine Club make up one franchise. The selectors will watch these games, pay attention to the performances and the better, say, fourteen (14) players from among these three teams will form one franchise team. So, you could have one parish or club having seven (7) or eight (8) players if they are that good. But what it (having selectors) does, (is) it creates a balance. It helps the players to get a fair look-in. If they are, you know, performing to get into the national team. What happened before, is that; from this competition, they would have been selected for national trials. We got a lot of complaints about people being overlooked and rural/urban bias or urban/rural bias and so on. The intention of the franchise is to eliminate all of these (biases).
What year was this franchise system implemented?
(We have had) two years of franchise. So it started in 2017.
And the name of the franchise competition?
Super League – JCA Super League
Your thoughts on Mark Neita’s comments on the insufficient rounds of competition in the Senior Cup.