CAPE TOWN. – Omphile Ramela, the Cape Cobras’ leading run-scorer in the domestic showpiece last season, will lead the Western Cape-franchise in the Sunfoil Series in the 2015/2016-season, while Justin Ontong will continue to wear the captain’s armband in limited-overs formats, notably the Momentum One Day Cup and Ram Slam T20 Challenge.
Ramela (27) was prolific with the bat the past six months, hammering two centuries and a double ton in his last five first-class appearances.
His electrifying 54 off 34 also powered the Cape Cobras to the Ram Slam T20 Challenge silver ware in December 2014 as the Cobras finished with a flourish.
“The decision taken to appoint Omphile as the skipper in the four-day competition was taken in joint consultation with Paul Adams and Justin, a vastly experienced duo who have been at the helm of most of the Cape Cobras’ trophy-success the past four years,” said Nabeal Dien, chief executive officer of the Cape Cobras.
“We will be forever indebted to the sterling contribution made by Justin as captain in the four-day competition and the legacy he has left in this format with bat and as lead-from-the-front-skipper,” Dien added.
“The vote of confidence in Omphile was taken firmly with the future in mind, as we believe he can realistically lead the Cobras for a number of years.
Justin is arguably in the twilight of his remarkable career, but we believe his contributions in all three formats are indispensable and can guide the Cobras to more titles.
“Justin has played a significant leadership role in the dominant limited-overs performances by the Cape Cobras, and their cup-success at Newlands the past few years. We hope to continue in this vain under his astute leadership in the shorter formats,” Adams said.
“We believe Omphile will lead from the front. He embraces the work-ethic that has been synonymous with Cape Cobras-excellence the past five years,” Adams added.
“His wealth of experience, shrewd cricket awareness, renowned leadership skills and sound interpersonal relationships will benefit him richly in the new role.”
Ramela has scored 129, 202*, 14, 112, 30 and 7 in his past five matches, a testimony to his new-found batting maturity. He has scored 3470 runs in 76 matches.
He slammed 112 on debut for South Africa A against India A in August.
The stylish left-hander, who has enrolled in a Masters-degree in Economics, is blessed with linguistic talent, as he speaks five languages.
“I’m excited about the appointment of Omphile. A former Boland captain and an integral part of the Cape Cobras top-order the past few seasons, he has displayed the leadership skills, determination and focus which can guide the Western Cape-franchise to new heights,” said Beresford Williams, chairman of the Board of Western Cape Cricket.
“The presence of several former and current international players in the Cape Cobras’ team who fulfil leadership roles will alleviate his captaincy burden. He is blessed to be surrounded by many seasoned professionals who will gladly share their expertise with him. The Western Cape cricket family is proud to have him as captain.
“We expect Justin to continue to dazzle with the bat, and lead by example in the limited-overs format. His contribution at Newlands and Boland Park as captain is legendary,” Williams added.