Cricket South Africa have expressed bitter disappointment in the decision by Kyle Abbott and Rilee Rossouw to take Kolpak contracts, saying they had invested much time and money in the two players.
Haroon Lorgat, the governing body’s CEO, said: ‘It is a loss as we invest immeasurable amounts which include premium time, finance, technical, high performance coaching followed by development tours and providing general player welfare over a long period of time.
‘By way of example, Rilee has spent a lengthy period on the injury list while we spared no expense in providing him with the best medical support.’
Lorgat said that Abbott’s national contract had been terminated with immediate effect, while CSA is in the process of following similar process with Rossouw.
‘It is a disappointing day not just for South African cricket, but also for international cricket as these players have given up their opportunity to be seen in action on the international circuit,’ added Lorgat.
‘Both Rilee and Kyle have been given opportunities over the past year to play at the highest level and were firmly in our plans for the future. We have encouraged Rilee and Kyle to reconsider their decisions but both have indicated that they wish to take up Kolpak contracts. Whilst this is a loss for South African cricket we can only wish them well with their overseas careers.
‘We will continue to invest heavily in our local talent and provide opportunities for those individuals who wish to realise their dream of playing for their country; we will not contract players who do not commit to play for South Africa.’.
Hampshire’s Director of Cricket, Giles White said: ‘Both are players of high quality and their commitment to long term contracts is a major boost to the Hampshire playing squad ahead of the 2017 season.
‘We are confident that having them around will have a big influence both on and off the field; we are excited about their arrival and look forward to welcoming them and their families to the club.”
Abbot made a positive impression during his time with Hampshire two years ago, claiming 36 first-class wickets at an average of just 20.33 during his season-long stay.
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