“I HAVE said time and time again that you cannot dry today’s washing with yesterday’s sun.
What was good enough yesterday might not be enough tomorrow. Knowing the real reasons why you are successful helps you hone in on what works and discard what doesn’t.
Sometimes it is not what you are doing but how you are doing it. Ours has become a world of instant gratification where ‘now’ is the only time. In case you are wondering where I am headed with all these philosophical annotations, here is where?
I have called you here ladies and gentlemen of the media to announce an innovation to the ABSA Premiership. It is an innovation borne out a careful sustained examination of the PSL against a backdrop contained in the annotations I made earlier.
There is no doubt that the ABSA Premiership has become a competitive league that is guaranteed to go to a photo finish season after season. In fact in the last five years the ABSA Premiership was decided in the final matches played simultaneously under circumstances where duplicate trophies and helicopters were held on ‘stand by’.
There is heightened excitement and conversation from the last eight fixtures of the league. This conversation transcends club support. It is about the permutations and probabilities.
It is about performance of teams against their rivals where factors such as venue, time of day even day of the week seem to have a bearing. It is about factors as rational as for example rival teams fighting for title contention versus a place in the top eight or avoiding relegation, to factors as irrational as teams and venues dubbed ‘hoo-doo’ teams and venues against certain teams.
The PSL Executive has therefore decided to add an innovation to the ABSA Premiership that will create and sustain the excitement and conversation experienced in the final eight fixtures of the premiership, to last for all of each team’s thirty fixtures of the season.
To achieve this, the ABSA Premiership League will from this season, from today, be divided into Four Quarters, Q1, Q2, Q3 and Q4. Q1 will have eight fixtures; Q2 seven; Q3 eight and Q4 seven. This means after every team has played eight games Q1 is over and Q2 starts with the re-set.
Similarly after every team has played an additional seven games Q2 will be complete and Q3 will commence with the re-set. So will Q4 commence after every team has played eight games in Q3 and the re-set.
This innovation is called the Q-innovation.
There will be a prize of R1.5 million for the teams that finish the different quarters at the top. This is over and above the R10 million prize for the overall ABSA Premiership League winner.
The prize money for the winner of the ABSA Premiership and the four Quarters is R16 million.
Ladies and gentlemen of the media, the greatest benefit from this innovation is how it makes every game count – every single one of the 240 ABSA Premiership games. It migrates the conversation from ‘just my club’s games’ to ‘every game played’.
Scenarios like, “How is the club that is an equal contender for the top spot against us is going to fare against the team we just drew against today or yesterday”, creates an across the board interest in all the games of the league in real time. It is like watching games on a split screen, all with a bearing on each other.
I am describing this conversation in singular and not plural although there are millions of supporters and fans conversing. I deliberately did not call it conversations because although millions are conversing, they are conversing about different aspects of the same topic. It is this convergence in conversation that this innovation seeks to consolidate.
This conversation happens in your different media platforms. The millions of supporters and fans consume their soccer through your reports and broadcasts. It is through your observations, words and images that the excitement and conversation are fuelled. Your words and images – written, heard and seen.
It is for this reason that we decided to not limit the excitement and competition to the teams alone. The PSL Executive has therefore decided to challenge you ladies and gentlemen of the media to make predictions based on your experience and thorough knowledge of the teams, game and conditions. You are after all doing this week in and week out.
The difference is that you will be submitting your predictions to the Auditors – Delloite.
The forms will be sent to every journalist on our Green 4 CRM system that is used, amongst other things, to send you invitations and media releases. This is to ensure that no journalist covering the ABSA Premiership is excluded.
The forms will require you to provide, amongst other things, your id numbers for verification purposes. It is important that you provide the information requested in the form.
As experts and celebrities in this space, your predictions will make for interesting reading. Especially since you are expected to get it all right given you only have to predict win, lose or draw – and not the scores.
With it being the nature of the beast, it expected that you will advance creative and compelling reasons for your predictions, especially the ones that miss the mark.
At the end Q1 the names of the winners, those that correctly predicted the team and points of the team that will win Q1, will be put into a draw. The winner will win R500 000 in the three categories of print, radio and television.
Your will be required to enter your predictions for the first four fixtures win, lose or draw. At the end of each team’s fourth fixture you will be requested to enter your prediction for Q1 winning team and points it will win by.
These will be kept by Delloite until the end of Q1 when the draw will be made. If not one entry predicts the correct team and points, the entries correctly identifying the team will be put into a draw from which the winner will be drawn.
The prize for the winner will in this case be R250 000 for each category – print, radio and television.
Entries for this weekend fixture, which is game one for every team this season, will close at 19h00 this evening.
Entries for all subsequent fixtures will be due one hour before kick-off of first game in that fixture block.
For example the deadline for the game 2 fixture will be 18h30 on Tuesday, 21 August 2012 for all the game 2 fixtures taking place on Wednesday 21 August and Thursday 22 August. Entries should be emailed to this email address: Qinnovation@psl.co.za.
The PSL has extensively consulted and enquired if this competition involving journalists that cover its space raises any ethical issues.
We are satisfied that just like journalism awards recognise and reward journalist without compromising the integrity of the profession, this competition does not compromise the ethics and integrity of the journalist covering the ABSA Premiership.
This inclusive competition will instead enhance the job already performed by the journalist in this space without any negative influence. You ladies and gentlemen are already making these predictions. All that is added is that you will be doing the prediction with a possibility of recognition and reward for you or charity.
I am mentioning charity as the PSL Executive has provided for journalists who are precluded from winning prize money by their employers or for any other reason can nominate a charity of their choice to be a recipient beneficiary of their prize.