'A very sad day for our country, cricket and millions of fans': South Africa cricket in predicament

'A very sad day for our country, cricket and millions of fans': South Africa cricket in predicament

The sports minister of South Africa Nathi Mthethwa has decided to meddle in Cricket South Africa administrative affairs. The interim board of CSA has officially received notice from the sports minister that he has promulgated the article that warrants government intervention when issues can't be dealt with by sports officials. It is pertinent to mention that International Cricket Council (ICC) forbids government involvement in cricket organising bodies.

On Thursday Mthethwa decided to enforce the act stating “by defunding CSA and derecognising CSA and I will cause this to be published in the Government Gazette”.

CSA interim board members are very concerned over the brewing crisis and have deemed the entire situation as unfortunate and not helpful for the game as it puts players and everybody involved with cricket in South Africa's bread and butter at stake. 

"It is indeed a very sad day for our country, for cricket, for the millions of fans who love the game and the sponsors who have committed to cricket and its grassroots development," said Stavros Nicolaou, chairman of CSA’s interim board.

"But it is a specifically sad day for the players, staff and others whose livelihood are at stake."

The government and, by and large, CSA's interim board's majority of members are effectively on the same page and lobbying against the decision making members of the CSA council. The latest conflict arose when the members' council rejected the new constitution for CSA which, if approved, would have given an independent chairman and autonomous members.

The members' council comprise of 14 presidents of provincial cricket unions and the majority rejected changes to the constitution which prompted the sports minister to step in and exercise his power.

"It is deeply disappointing that a self-interested vocal minority voted against change while three members chose to abstain," CSA's interim board said after the vote.

"These actions have now brought the game to its knees and will cause the greatest crisis since (South Africa's international) readmission."

CSA finds itself embroiled in one crisis after another and the crisis dates back to 2020 when some senior officials were fired over misdemeanour and to make matters more troublesome, the board faces financial hurdles too. 

Several Proteas players including senior statesmen Dean Elgar and captain Temba Bavuma harbingered dire consequences of government involvement.