Graeme Smith to take knee for Black Lives Matter: There is no room for neutrality

Graeme Smith
Graeme Smith
  • CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith expressed his support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
  • The former Proteas captain said that he stands behind fast bowler Lungi Ngidi, who was the first Proteas cricketer to speak up on the matter.
  • Smith revealed that he will take the knee in Saturday's inaugural Solidarity Cup at SuperSport Park.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) Director of Cricket Graeme Smith will take the knee along with all the players and staff at Saturday's Solidarity Cup at SuperSport Park, Centurion.

The Black Lives Matter movement has gained massive traction in South African cricket after Proteas fast bowler Lungi Ngidi stated that he would educate and bring the message forward in Proteas the dressing room.

Ngidi's views led to criticism on social media by former South African cricketers Rudi Steyn, Pat Symcox and Boeta Dippenaar, who argued that "all lives matter".

Since then, CSA has been firm on their support of the movement in several press releases, stating that they are "actively working to redress the inequalities of the past".

"CSA Board and CSA Exco stand with this group, and every other cricket player, coach and fan that believes that there is no place for racism of any kind in cricket. CSA encourages more current and former players and coaches to do the same," the organisation said in a statement.

30 former Proteas - all players of colour - and five coaches also signed and expressed their support for Ngidi and the Black Lives Matter movement.

READ | Makhaya Ntini recalls avoiding riding on Proteas team bus: 'I was forever lonely'

Smith, who retired from international cricket in 2018, took to Twitter to stand by Ngidi and stated that "there is no room for neutrality on this topic".

"As a Director of Cricket at Cricket South Africa, a former Protea and captain, a team-mate, a father, a brother, a friend and most importantly fellow South African, I am proud to support this incredible important movement," wrote Smith on Twitter.

"There is no room for neutrality on this topic. I stand with Lungi Ngidi and our brothers and sisters around the world.

"I will join the teams tomorrow in taking the knee at the 3TC Solidarity Cup."

ALSO READ | Proteas batsman Rassie van der Dussen on why he supports BLM movement

Proteas star batsman and former captain Faf du Plessis spoke up on Friday and expressed his support for the Black Lives Matter movement.

Ahead of Saturday's Solidarity Cup, Proteas all-rounder Dwaine Pretorius also revealed that he will be taking the knee when he competes for the Kites.

The Solidarity Cup is CSA's response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and introduces a complex but exciting '3TC' format.

- Compiled by Lynn Butler

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