This sentiment was echoed by Cricket South Africa CEO Haroon Lorgat on Tuesday, during his address at the official launch of the domestic one-day competition.
After two rounds of domestic four-day matches, with cricket’s showpiece beginning on February 15, Horgat believed the limited overs format starting on Friday night would really get the 2014/15 season rolling.
“This year is about the World Cup. Fifty-over cricket is going to have a particular focus and there is no question in my mind that as this (domestic) cup starts, players who are in the fringe or eyeing selection to the national squad will make huge progress,” Lorgat said.
“There’s always a space available and I’m sure you are all eying Australia and New Zealand next year,” he added, addressing the various franchise captains in attendance.
Lorgat was also full of praise for the Proteas as they geared up for a tour to New Zealand and Australia as part of their World Cup preparations.
“We’re certainly passionate about the team. Our hopes are rising and they are playing brilliant cricket. Unquestionably they’ve made enormous progress.
“Nothing happens by accident. We planned this (tour). Those are important tests in their progression, development and confidence building to the World Cup, and one-day cricket is the undoubted focus.”