- The Cricket South Africa board has issued a directive to the Proteas to adopt a united stance against racism.
- This follows the flak the Proteas have received throughout the year and was highlighted in their T20 World Cup opener against Australia.
- The Proteas will adopt this new gesture ahead of their T20 World Cup clash against the Windies on Tuesday.
The Cricket South Africa (CSA) board on Monday unanimously agreed to issue a directive requiring all Proteas players to adopt a consistent and united stance against racism by "taking the knee" prior to the start of their remaining T20 World Cup matches.
The Proteas have received flak for their inconsistent support of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, with some players standing to attention while others take the knee.
This was particularly highlighted following their different stances during their T20 World Cup opener against Australia this past weekend and former Proteas team manager Mohammed Moosajee's testimony at the SJN.
Taking the knee is the global gesture against racism adopted by sportspeople across sporting codes.
In a CSA statement by the board, which came through just over an hour out from Tuesday's clash against the West Indies in Dubai, it was stated that the different postures taken by team members in support of the BLM initiative created an "unintended perception of disparity or lack of support for the initiative".
After considering all relevant issues, including the position of the players, the board felt that it was imperative for the team to be seen taking a united and consistent stand against racism, especially given the country's history.
Several other teams at the T20 World Cup, like England and Australia, have adopted a consistent stance against the issue, and the board felt it is time for the Proteas to do the same.
"A commitment to overcoming racism is the glue that should unite, bind and strengthen us. Race should not be manipulated to amplify our weaknesses. Diversity can and should find expression in many facets of our daily lives, but not when it comes to taking a stand against racism," said CSA board chairperson Lawson Naidoo.
"South Africans were recently joined by people across the world in celebrating the 90th birthday of our revered Archbishop Desmond Tutu. What better tribute from the Proteas to an icon of the struggle for freedom in South Africa than to demonstrate we are working to fulfil his vision of a united South Africa."
The Proteas will be adopting this new stance for the first time on Tuesday ahead of their T20 World Cup clash against the West Indies in Dubai (12:00 SA time).
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