Following the reports of the establishment of the Alberta Cricket Council amongst claims that the Alberta Cricket Association was no longer a registered not-for-profit with the Alberta government, the ACA and Cricket Canada have made their positions clear.
Cricket Canada on their web site posted a statement clearing indicating what side they were taking in the “wars” over control of cricket in Alberta.
“Cricket Canada wishes to inform the members and its supporters about recent claims that were made concerning Alberta Cricket Association (ACA) being struck from the Alberta Corporate Registries and deemed to cease to carry on business in the Province of Alberta. These claims as per recent proof provided are updated and confirmed that ACA had never lost its Provincial Sport Organization (PSO) status and remains in active control of Cricket in Alberta.”
The Alberta Cricket Association president, Salman Khan, posted a response to the Alberta Cricket Council claims on their facebook site:-
“Folks, please find answers to Soap Opera and fake claims. Keeping myself as much Professional as I can. Legal Council has shrink my response from 3 pages to one and kept rest for some other time.” followed by a 10 point rebuttal.
Meanwhile the Alberta Cricket Council held their inaugural AGM, with apparently a wide representation as indicated on their Facebook page
“#ACC would like to thank everyone who joined us for our 1st AGM in Blackfalds, AB. At final count we had around 40 people at the venue and another 30+ joined through the WebEx. 7 Cities & District Leagues were represented, along with the Alberta Women’s League.”
We are unaware of the inside story, or what has caused this rift in cricket in Alberta. Whatever the cause, and the arguments on either side, Canadian cricket cannot afford to have one of the major provinces torn apart – this does damage to the reputation of the sport nationally, and internationally, especially coming as it does after a protracted struggle for control of cricket in Ontario, and similar issues in Saskatchewan.
It seems likely that the next stage will be for the Alberta Cricket Council to apply for Cricket Canada membership. The Cricket Canada constitution states that “Any provincial cricket association that demonstrates effective control of organized competitive cricket within the province concerned will be considered a Member with voting privileges at any Meeting of the members.” It appears from the Cricket Canada statement that the Alberta Cricket Council application will not be welcomed, but at this stage it is clear that neither the ACC or ACA does fully control cricket in Alberta. The ACC is driven by the Calgary and District Cricket Association, the biggest league in Alberta, and despite attempts by the ACA to set up a rival league within the city, the ACC is likely to represent a significant number of Calgary cricketers.
Thus Cricket Canada has a choice to make. They can take an active role in trying to resolve these issues within Alberta by mediating or taking a strong stance that unless these issues are resolved between the bodies, neither can be members as neither has effective control of cricket in the province; or they will have to make a choice between the two bodies (and it looks as though the board at least has already made that choice. A creative alternative might be to change the membership and constitutional structure of Cricket Canada to allow more than one member per province.
It is to be hoped that going forward decisions at national level will be driven by what’s best for cricket in Alberta, and Canada – and not by the number of votes that the “winning” side can bring to bear in elections. Alberta however has often been an important player in high level cricket politics in Canada- the Cricket Canada multiple votes/ province structure means that their support combined with one or two other provinces can effectively elect a candidate.