It’s been quite a year for cricket in South Africa and often not in good ways.
Here are the top five defining moments of 2017.
1. January 5 — Kyle Abbott goes Kolpak
The curse of Kolpak has hung over South African cricket for years and it will for while yet Brexit permitting.
But Abbott’s defection was different because just days before he announced it‚ he professed loyalty to the game in this country with what sounded like sincerity in a press conference at Kingsmead.
And there he was‚ at Newlands the next week‚ asking reporters if they were going to buy his groceries.
Here’s a better question: how the hell can anyone believe Abbott?
2. June 11 — India beat South Africa in their Champions Trophy match at the Oval
The ease of India’s victory‚ which they achieved by eight wickets with a dozen overs to spare‚ shocked South Africans far and wide.
Despite almost everything and almost everyone having had a go at making South Africa measure up to the sum of their impressive parts in major tournaments‚ they still couldn’t play when the pressure was on.
The result put the South Africans out of the running for a place in the semi-finals and probably had a lot to do with Ottis Gibson being hired as coach with the express instruction to win the 2019 World Cup.
Good luck‚ Gibbo.
3. July 9 — England beat South Africa in the first test at Lord’s
Murphy’s law was rampant in South Africa’s camp.
Captain Faf du Plessis missed the match on daddy duty.
Too many catches were put down‚ two while Joe Root was busy scoring 190 in his first match as England’s captain.
Spidercam got in the way of Vernon Philander taking another catch‚ this one offered by Jonny Bairstow.
By then‚ Philander had been injured by way of a blow to the bowling hand while he was batting.
England’s superiority in all departments‚ which earned them victory by 211 runs inside four days‚ set the tone for a series they would win 3-1.
4. September 28 — Haroon Lorgat’s tenure as Cricket South Africa (CSA) chief executive ends
When football managers’ employers relieve them of their duties before their contracts end‚ the headlines are heavy with words like fired‚ sacked and axed.
When exactly that happened to Lorgat‚ CSA tried to pass off his jettisoning as the parties having “mutually agreed to part ways with immediate effect”.
CSA got rid of the man because the failed inaugural edition of the T20 Global League (T20GL) would have bled money.
5. October 10 — CSA “postpone” the T20GL
CSA have tried to pin on Lorgat the mess that became what acting chief executive Thabang Moroe described in Port Elizabeth on Wednesday as the “cancelled‚ sorry postponed” T20GL.
The tournament‚ Moroe said in the days that followed the event being called off‚ would cost CSA US$25-million in losses in the first year alone.
By Telford Vice
Source: TMG Digital.