CSA powerless over player exodus

Haroon Lorgat (Gallo Images)
Haroon Lorgat (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Cricket South Africa (CSA) Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat admits that they cannot do anything on the exodus of players leaving South African shores.

Already there have been numerous Protea players signing Kolpak deals, including Stiaan van Zyl for Sussex, Simon Harmer for Essex and Hardus Viljoen for Derbyshire.

A Kolpak deal allows players to compete in domestic cricket in South Africa in the English winter, but they must forfeit their international careers while under contract in England.

The Guardian reported that Protea spinner Dane Piedt may be next in line to forfeit his international career for the Proteas and is looking to move to England.

Last week, Johannesburg-born Keaton Jennings scored a century on his debut for England with many South Africans feeling hard-done by the 'system'.

CSA have admitted that this is an issue, however they cannot prevent players joining English counties but they can otherwise focus on their own domestic structure.

"We cannot restrain individuals from plying their trade," Lorgat told the Guardian. "Over and above our regular reviews of the domestic playing rules and regulations to ensure it is fit for purpose, we will continue to rather focus on making sure that we have the best systems to produce the best cricketers in numbers.

"We have realised a long time back that the world is a global village with people very mobile. Like in every other country and across every other profession, South African citizens will venture abroad to take advantage of stronger currencies and employment opportunities."

In April, sports minister Fikile Mbalula banned CSA, SA Rugby, Athletics South Africa (ASA) and Netball South Africa (NSA) from bidding for major events due to their lack of transformation.

The targets require the Proteas to play an average minimum of 54% black players and average minimum of 18% black african players in all formats over the course of the season.

However, Lorgat dismisses any notion that players going abroad due to transformation as ridiculous.

"Any player citing transformation or targets is looking for a soft excuse as he or she might not be prepared to work hard enough to fight for a place in our representative teams," said Lorgat.

"We only select the best as was evident in our recent successes against Australia. You don’t whitewash Australia or beat them seven times in a row without choosing your best."

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