Cricket South Africa is to officially introduce transformation player ‘targets’ at national team level.
While these have been enforced at club and franchise level, until now there has been no official policy for the Proteas.
A statement issued on Tuesday said the Board of Directors of Cricket South Africa (CSA) has approved in principle the decision to introduce targets for all the national teams.
‘In the past we had never set targets in our national teams but with changing circumstances we feel it is essential to move with the times,’ said CSA President Chris Nenzani.
But exactly how many players of colour will be in the team by decree has yet to be decided. The franchises are required to field six players of colour, of whom three had to be ethnic Africans.
‘The precise targets will depend on work to be undertaken by relevant committees to determine what is realistic and sustainable. This will be announced in due course,’ said Nenzani. ‘We will aim to achieve our targets over the course of the year and not on a match by match basis.’
Nenzani told Parliament last year that the ideal was to have the national team 50% transformed, but the scope and the definition had yet to be decided.
He insisted at the time there was no quota for the national side. ‘We don’t set targets, we give guidelines. A player gets into the national team not because he is black. He needs to be a good player first.’
The ‘guidelines’ over national team selection were recently in the spotlight in the aftermath of the World Cup 2015 semi-final, when it emerged that CSA CEO Haroon Lorgat had been consulted on the team make-up and reminded the selectors of the transformation targets of four players of colour in the team. Vernon Philander, who had played much of the tournament with a hamstring injury, was picked ahead of the in-form Kyle Abbott.
The Board also received presentations on the progress of the Domestic Cricket Review as well as the repositioning of its domestic T20 competition. Whatever changes are made both in the domestic structures and in the T20 competition are scheduled to be introduced for the 2017/18 season.
Some of the proposed key principles for the global T20 are:
♦Separation of this competition from the other franchise competitions
♦An optimal number of 8 teams for a competition spread over 4-6 weeks
♦The league will be owned by Cricket South Africa and will take place from late November to the middle of December with the final on December 16 (a public holiday).