Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) has retained Mr Tavengwa Mukuhlani as Chairman after he was unanimously re-elected for a third four-year term during the organisation’s elective annual general meeting held in Bulawayo on Saturday.
Mr Sylvester Matshaka will continue serving as his deputy.
In accordance with the ZC Constitution, Zimbabwe’s 10 provincial cricket associations gathered as an electoral college and first elected seven members of the national Board from among themselves.
The seven provinces who made it onto the new Board are: Bulawayo Metropolitan (Mr Godwin Dube), Harare Metropolitan (Mr Tafadzwa Madoro), Manicaland (Mr Godfrey Nyadongo), Mashonaland East (Mr Godfrey Kaswa), Mashonaland West (Mr Ronald Chibwe), Matabeleland South (Mr Arthur Maposa) and Midlands (Mr John Makuwalo).
The provinces then elected onto the Board five directors nominated on the basis of their specialist skills: Mr Mukuhlani, Mr Matshaka, Ms Maureen Kuchocha, Mr Lloyd Mhishi and Mr Blessing Ngondo.
Afterwards, the new Board members elected the Chairman and Vice-Chairman from among themselves.
Delivering his acceptance speech, Mr Mukuhlani said: “Thank you for once again showing confidence in me to lead you for another four years as Chairman of Zimbabwe Cricket.
“It’s a position that comes with a lot of responsibility, it’s a position that comes with a lot of honour and pride to represent Zimbabwe and to lead this organisation – I don’t take it for granted.
“We have shown in the past eight years our ability to transform this sport into an industry that creates opportunities for young athletes, that creates opportunities for professionals . . .
“That can only happen if we build on the successes that we have seen in the last eight years and that can only happen when our governance structures are strong, robust and are able to be inclusive in so far as the various talents and abilities are at play within our organisation.
“We are a sport that has a place in so far as the development of this country is concerned.
“As I have said, we are one of the biggest employers in sport today in Zimbabwe, we are one of the biggest foreign currency earners for the country in sport today and we can only do better.
“The more we do better, the more we touch lives through sport – we can change the lives of young athletes from disadvantaged backgrounds by way of having a successful sport code in cricket.
“You will agree with me that (Sikandar) Raza has become a household name in Zimbabwe.
“He came to Zimbabwe as an immigrant but today we are all proud of what he has achieved and it goes to show what sport can do in our society.
“And I would want to encourage each and every one of us in our space, wherever we are – in our provinces, in our various roles in this organisation – to be cognisant of the fact that we have a role to play in the bigger picture of the game and we are all here to serve the game.
“We subordinate our personal interests, we subordinate our personal egos, we subordinate our desires to the one global goal: that is to make cricket bigger and greater.
“We are here to serve fans, we are here to deliver a product to the fans and we are here to deliver a product to the market.
“The cricket economics is premised on how well we do on the field of play, how well our teams perform, and that determines how much we can get out of our TV rights, out of our commercial rights, out of our ground rights, out of our sponsorship deals.
“But for our team to perform well we must have a solid administration on the ground, we must have a solid management on the ground that is sensitive to the needs of the players, that is sensitive to the needs of the fans and, most importantly, to the welfare of players.
“My leadership as Chairman in the next four years will be to consolidate that position to make sure that when a player puts on the badge and walks onto the field he is proud, she is proud to be a Zimbabwean, they are prepared to die a little bit for the flag, they are prepared to die a little for the bird.
“That can only happen when us the leaders, when us the administrators demonstrate that level of patriotism and, I repeat, how we administer our stewardship in terms of resources that are at our disposal as we run the organisation and, most importantly, the financial resources that are at our disposal.
“We need to be an accountable organisation, we need to be accountable people, we need to be accountable provinces, we need to show leadership at every level.
“We need to show empathy for our staff, we need to show empathy for our players.
“We have been given an opportunity as a Board to lead this organisation out of a possible 15 million people who are maybe more capable than us but the opportunity is for us today to lead Zimbabwe Cricket.
“Let’s respect that honour that has been bestowed on us by the stakeholders and deliver on the promise and expectations of the nation.”