Johannesburg - The Western Province Cricket Association has made two significant appointments, with Nabeal Dien taking over as General Manager and former Test star Paul Adams slotting in as Head Coach of the Western Cape Cricket Academy.
The Academy is a joint venture with the Boland Cricket Board.
"Western Province and the region generally has made two big catches with these appointments," said Andre Odendaal, Chief Executive of the WPCA and the Nashua Cape Cobras.
"Nabeal is one of the most respected and experienced administrators in amateur cricket in South Africa, while Paul inspired many youngsters during a distinguished playing career and is the ideal man to bring new energy to our Academy system."
Dien said he was determined to get amateur and youth cricket in the province "back to where it should be".
The former schoolteacher has a long history with Western Province cricket, having worked for the association for 11 years and rising to the position of Chief Executive of Amateur Cricket before leaving full-time employment in July 2008 to pursue other interests. Dien said he had three main objectives: `"Firstly, to raise youth cricket to a level where it can be a national role model and active feeder for the Cape Cobras and National sides.
"Secondly, I want our players at all levels to have confidence in our system."
Dien said he wanted to see a situation where good players remained loyal to Western Province. "Too many players produced in the Western Cape have gone on to play their cricket elsewhere," he said.
Another major challenge was to foster cricket in black African areas.
Adams, who took 134 wickets in 45 Test matches for South Africa, said he was excited by his appointment.
Currently completing his Level Three coaching qualification, Adams said he had enjoyed being involved with the Western Province team in recent years. "I believe the Academy is a very important part of our cricket.
We have a lot of talent in the Western Cape and my challenge is to get them ready to play first-class cricket."
Adams will be in charge of both the Western Province and Boland Academies, which both have 16 full-time students. The ages of the participants range from 18 to 23. The Academy programme is a mixture of education and practical cricket coaching.
Boland Chief Executive and Western Cape Cricket Academy Chairman, Omar Henry, said "Paul Adams is following in the footsteps of former Western Cape Academy coaches like Eddie Barlow, Peter Kirsten, Eric Simons and Vincent Barnes who all went on to higher honours as coaches. He is ideal for the job. Young players will look up to him and he knows his cricket".