South African domestic cricket May 31, 2005

Kemp named as Titans captain

Cricinfo staff

Justin Kemp: a fantastic season capped by a new appointment © Getty Images

South Africa's one-day allrounder, Justin Kemp, has been appointed as captain of the Nashua Titans franchise for the 2005-06 season.

Kemp, who made a successful return to international cricket against England in January and February, enjoyed a brilliant domestic season in 2004-05, especially in the PRO20 Series in which he averages 82.50 at a strike-rate of 189.65, including 13 sixes.

During the Standard Bank Cup, Kemp averaged 56.50 at a strike-rate of 77.13, and received the Mutual and Federal Award for the Standard Bank Cup player of the year. Often branded a one-day specialist, Kemp also averaged 57.77 in first-class cricket.

Kemp's sublime form has resuscitated his international career and he performed superbly with the bat in one-day internationals for South Africa against England, Zimbabwe and West Indies this season. He has already, at this early stage of the year passed Lance Klusener's record of 23 sixes scored in a calendar year, which Klusener accomplished in 1999.

"It was not only Kemp's fine performances which had elevated him to the status of Captain of the Titans, however" said Brandon Foot, the chairman of the board. "Kemp has developed over the past two seasons into a highly competitive cricketer, who has matured remarkably and emerged as a natural leader within the Titans.

"Of significance, is that each and every Titans squad member was asked to cast a vote for the Titans captain, and Justin has emerged as having overwhelming support."

Kemp is currently honing his skills with Kent Country Cricket Club under the watchful guidance of the former South African national coach, Graham Ford, in the company of Martin Van Jaarsveld and Andrew Hall.

"Justin will be returning from Kent early, by prior arrangement with Kent Country Cricket Club", said Foot. "We are comfortable that he is in most capable hands under Graham Ford."

Kemp expressed his pleasure at his appointment. "It is a great honour to be made captain of such a talented team. This is a job that I wanted badly and I am very pleased to have been given such an opportunity. It will be difficult to follow in the significant footsteps of my predecessor Daryll Cullinan and I would like to thank Daryll for all that he has done for both myself and the Titans. I am also grateful to my team-mates for having supported my appointment."

Foot added: "The Board is aware that Kemp could well not be available for the Titans when he is called up for, in particular one-day international duty by South Africa. We are, however indeed fortunate to have a number of Titans who have both experience and potential as leaders. Should Justin be called upon for national duty, we will have able replacements for him and this will also ensure pro-active succession planning for the Titans captaincy into the future."