The ACA Premier Cricket Program is a key initiative of the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA), the funds for which are an unprecedented contribution by the current male players for the betterment of the game.
Almost $1 million a season has been dedicated to the Program. Each of Australia's 87 Male Premier Cricket clubs are able to receive grants to utilise former or non-contracted first class cricketers in playing, coaching or mentoring capacities.
What are the programs objectives?
Among the key objectives of the Premier Cricket Program are the following:
- Provide a platform for ACA Members to remain in Premier Cricket through playing, coaching, talent identification and administrative roles
- Narrow the gap between Premier Cricket and High Performance/First Class Cricket
- Create additional opportunities for clubs to support and enhance existing budgets and structures
- Grow a sustainable program that ensures Premier Cricket remains the lifeblood of Australian Cricket within the National Player Pathway
- Retain First Class Cricketers who are able to support young talent
- Provide a higher level competition for all players involved in Premier Cricket
- Excite, inspire and improve the next generation of Australian First Class Cricketers
- Support the development of emerging talent while balancing club objectives
Who is eligible?
- Male & Female uncontracted ACA Members
- Recently delisted players who still having playing aspirations
- Past players (who are current or eligible ACA Members) with a desire to identify, coach and develop players within the Australian Cricket Pathway.
- Players who still have BBL contracts are still considered contracted players and therefore ineligible for the program.
What are the potential roles?
ACA Members in this program can fill a combination of the roles listed below:
- Senior Club Coach
- Senior Assistant
- Junior Talent Coach / Lower XI Player￼
What sort of tasks are involved?
ACA Members appointed in these roles are making a regular commitment to the club for the full season and will undertake a range of tasks including:
- Assisting in the identification and recruitment of talented players;
- Providing intelligence from Premier Cricket competitions to State Talent Managers/Selectors;
- Reviewing and assessing potential contracted players for underage and senior state squads;
- Promoting National/State coaching and selection philosophies to club leaders and players;
- Mentoring and 'coaching' of coaches - utilising high performance language, messages and game styles/plans;
- Identifying strengths and weaknesses in Premier Cricket;
- Acting as a conduit to share information and expectations to coaches, selectors and players at club level.
Who are the key stakeholders?
- Australian Cricketers' Association (the Program is managed by the ACA)
- It is supported by Cricket Australia, and the States and Territories
- Premier Cricket Clubs
- State Talent Managers
How is the program funded?
- The funding comes as a result of Cricket Australia's (CA) most recent media rights deals with Channels 9 and 10 (2013). CA advised the ACA that the Player Payment Pool (PPP) is estimated to increase by $43m compared to the original estimates for the 2012-17 MOU period.
- As part of the process of compiling the State of the Game report, the ACA met with all current players who unanimously chose to contribute some of this Player Payment Pool increase to initiatives that will help strengthen the game.
- It is money that would otherwise have gone into the Player Payment Pool and is essentially a donation from the current male players to the past players for their, and the game's benefit.
- The Player Partnership Fund (formally known as the State of the Game fund) incorporates the ACA Premier Cricket Program, the Female Health Insurance Scheme, the Premier Cricket Volunteer Program and an Internship Program.
Can the $10,000 be split between multiple ACA Members?
Yes, As long as the $10,000 is used to engage an ACA Member clubs can split the funding between multiple members. This does not encourage ACA Members to be used as sporadic specialist coaches. All ACA Members involved are to be engaged in genuine ongoing season long commitments.
Do i need to register if i was involved in the program last season?
Yes, $10,000 is a large investment so we need to ensure that this program has ongoing success. However successful your club/ACA Member utilised the program in 2015/16 each application needs to be considered again to continuie to add the most value to Premier Cricket as possible.
Are female ACA Members eligible for the program?
All uncontracted ACA Members (either male or female) are eligible to be a part of this program. The program is however currently only supporting male premier cricket, therefore female ACA Members can be involved in the program but need to fulfil roles within the male premier club.
What the players said at the inception of the program (June 2015)
"Every player who represents a State, Big Bash League or Australian team comes through the Premier Cricket system. While for some of us the opportunities at the moment to play at club level are limited, having competitive and testing competitions influenced by experienced and knowledgeable players is vital."
- Michael Clarke
"As current players, we're passionate about strengthening Premier Cricket and remember the influence that many former first-class players had on our careers as we came through. The decision to invest in the Premier Cricket Program is therefore one that's close to home and hopefully a way that we can ensure the generations to come receive the best possible education at club level."
- Shane Watson
What ACA Members and clubs said of the program in 2015/16
“This has been a great program for myself. After I retired due to injury I didn’t want anything to do with cricket. Having a young family, the grant justified the extra time I would spend away from them and I have since become a very passionate coach which is something I didn’t expect.”
- Liam Davis, ACA Member & Subiaco Floreat Cricket Club Coach, WA
“This is an outstanding programme which has already provided enormous benefit to our club. Providing clubs with the ability to bring in former first class players has a high degree of credibility and assists with addressing one of the key issues Premier Cricket faces, the loss of first class players. Well done ACA”
- Paul Goldsmith, Penrith Cricket Club President, NSW
How do you apply for the ACA Premier Cricket Program?
Premier Cricket Clubs
It is the responsibility of Premier Cricket Club administrators to complete an application form once a working relationship with an ACA member has been discussed. This is still required for clubs who would like to continue a working relationship with their ACA Member from the 2015/16 season. this application process is also our way of maintaining up to date contact information.
Alternatively, if a Premier Cricket Club finds it difficult to establish a relationship with an ACA member, the club administrator can complete a 'Premier Cricket Club Vacancy' form which allows the club to identify the specific role they would like an ACA member to fill. This vacancy will then be published on our website and circulated to ACA Members.
Club administrators will need to enter the password sent to the club admin email address which will allow clubs access to the secure Premier Cricket Program section of the website.
ACA Members new to the ACA Premier Cricket Program in 2016/17
ACA members new to the ACA Premier Cricket Program in 2016/17 must complete an expression of interest form whether a relationship has already been discussed and established with a club or you are expressing your interest in the program. Members will need to sign in using their ACA Member login to gain access to this form.
ACA Members continuing in a similar role to last season can email firstname.lastname@example.org to notify the ACA of your intention to renew your contract for the 2016/17 season.
Club & Member Contracts
Once applications have been approved in principle a contract between the club and the ACA will need to be signed and a club contract between the club and ACA Member will need to be provided to the ACA. This is to ensure funds are to be passed on from the club to the ACA Members as intended.
When do applications need to be submitted?
Expressions of Interest and Application forms must be completed by 31 July 2016, however please submit applications as early as possible. This date is set to allow enough time for agreements to be formalised and ACA Members to make a significant contribution in the clubs pre-season.
ACA Members and clubs involved in the program will be required to attend an induction/development session that will take place late in the pre season or the start of the Premier season. Dates will be confirmed at a later time for respective states.
What is the process once a registration form or club vacancy form are submitted?
By completing a member registration form and indicating that you have not established a relationship with a club your details will be provided to clubs that are still looking for an ACA Member.
Similarly the details of premier clubs that complete an opportunity in your club form will be collected and provided on the website and circulated to ACA Members. It will be the clubs responsibility to establish a working relationship with an appropriate member once that connection is made.
What if I haven't renewed my ACA membership?
ACA Members wishing to apply will need to ensure they are current ACA Members or have renewed their memberships before the ACA can process their application. Contact us on 03 9698 7200 or email Kylie Crowley (email@example.com)
Do I need a Working with Children check/Police check?
It is a legal requirement in Australia for anyone working with children to undertake an authorised check. Participation in this Program will involve working with children. You will need to undertake a check and provide details to your club executives.
What are the reporting/administration expectations?
You will be expected to maintain regular contact with club executives and have regular contact with State Talent Managers to identify and monitor talent.
Clubs will need to provide the ACA with two (2) invoices: one at the start of the season coinciding with the induction/development session and the second at teh conclusion of the season.
Mid and post-season reporting will need to be completed by a club official and/or the ACA Member at the instruction of the ACA's Program Manager.
When will I receive payment and what are my obligations?
The fees are paid in two equal instalments to the club, the first will coincide with an induction/development process at the start of the season. The second payment will be at the conclusion of the season subject to the satisfactory completion of roles and reporting and the provision of valid tax invoices.
If the Club is required by law to make any superannuation contributions in respect of any amounts payable under this Contract, the Club will make these payments at the times and in the manner required by applicable legislation. You acknowledge and agree that these superannuation contributions form part of the Fees.
The Club will make payment of each instalment (excluding the superannuation component (if any) and net of any amounts which the Club is required by law to withhold) to the bank account nominated by the ACA Member.
If GST is payable by you on any Fees then, subject to the provision by you of a valid tax invoice for the amount of the GST, the Club will pay you the amount of the GST at the same time as it makes payment of the Fees.
You acknowledge that you are responsible for any tax, GST and other payments required to be made by you by law.
Who is the Manager of the Premier Cricket Program?
The Premier Cricket Program is managed by former Tasmanian paceman and current Premier cricketer Brendan Drew.
Brendan Drew (Membership & Game Development Manager)
PO Box 395, South Melbourne, VIC, 3205
Phone: (03) 9698 7210
Fax: (03) 9698 7299