Former Proteas batsman Alviro Petersen has received hate mail over his support of Lungi Ngidi’s stance for the Black Lives Matter movement.
Like many former black Proteas players and current senior professional coaches, Petersen publicly stood up for Ngidi’s comments that he would encourage his fellow Proteas teammates to also support the #BLM movement and take a stand against racism in cricket.
Ngidi was, however, criticised by former Proteas players Boeta Dippenaar and Pat Symcox for his stance.
In a long Twitter thread, Petersen stated on Thursday that he was subjected to a lot of social abuse by members of the public for his support of Ngidi, while being labelled a ‘quota player’.
‘Since my public stance supporting Lungi Ngidi, #BLM, and speaking about the systemic racism within cricket, sport and society in South Africa – I have received many hate mail. Some have labeled [sic] me a “quota player”, playing because of my skin colour & cc’d the likes of Boeta (Dippenaar) in …
‘Let me set the record straight – I have scored more T20, limited overs, first-class and Test runs than Boeta. I have scored more T20, limited overs, first-class and Test hundreds than Boeta, despite him playing longer than me. Yet, I am referred to as a “quota player”.’
Similar to testimonies also shared on Twitter last week by former Proteas player Ashwell Prince and former Titans bowler Ethy Mbhalati, Petersen went on to explain how he constantly had to prove himself to be deemed a worthy selection for the national team and not a player of colour in the eyes of the South African media and cricket fraternity.
‘You know me, but you don’t know my story. You know some things I have done, but you don’t know what I went through! I was never given a free ride in cricket, I EARNED MY SPOT THROUGH PERFORMANCES. I broke several records in 2008/09 and only made my debut in 2010 …
‘I have sharpened my argument in law and in human rights to fight against any forms of discrimination. You can victimize me, spread lies about me or even degrade me but I will continue to stand for equality for black and white people!’
Petersen was also part of the big group of former black Proteas players and current coaches that supported Ngidi earlier this week. The group includes names such as Vernon Philander, Herschelle Gibbs, Makhaya Ntini, JP Duminy and Paul Adams, to name a few.