• Black players criticise selection

    Cricket South Africa are facing fresh criticism over their transformation policy after a group of black players wrote to the governing body to air their disappointment at the lack of opportunities for them at national level.

    The players, calling themselves ‘Black cricketers in unity’ sent the letter to CSA last week.

    Die Burger newspaper reported on Wednesday that the letter was sent to CSA detailing black players’ disappointment at how they are being used, especially when it comes to national sides.

    According to the letter black players are ‘sick and tired’ of getting picked for national squads, but then failing to get into the starting XI.

    ‘If we’re not ready for international cricket, stop picking us,’ they said

    The letter also says black players are tired of being used as ‘political pawns’ and ‘official water carriers’. They say it’s clear that black players are not trusted to perform under pressure and fulfil leadership roles.

    The letter ends with the hashtag #DrinksCarriersMustFall.

    The final straw that prompted the letter is said to be the decision by the Proteas team management on the current tour of India to fly Dean Elgar over there as cover for the injured JP Duminy, despite Khaya Zondo being a member of the touring ODI squad as batting cover.

    Elgar was subsequently picked ahead of Zondo for the final ODI against India, which South Africa won by 214 runs. Another example mentioned was that of Aaron Phangiso, who was the only player in the World Cup squad not to play a game at the tournament.

    Lonwabo Tsotsobe, a bowler with an excellent record in one-day cricket, has also been forgotten, they said.

    The case of Thami Tsolekile was again brought up. Tsolekile toured with the Proteas for quite a few years as the back-up wicketkeeper, but was overlooked every time when Mark Boucher couldn’t play as AB de Villiers was preferred ahead of him.

    One of the black players who was consulted before the letter was drawn up told Die Burger it was never the plan to begin a dialogue with CSA in public. They merely wanted to express their disappointment at the current state of affairs with CSA and start a conversation.

    Lorgat was on his way to India when asked for comment by the newspaper and said he hadn’t had time to study the grievances. He did say that the matter would be considered soon.

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