Wednesday, May 02, 2007

"Proteas lost because of prejudice, not affirmative action"

Steven Friedman's column in today's Business Day will get many people hot under the collar. He argues that racist prejudice, not affirmative action, was partly to blame for the woeful performance of the Proteas at the Cricket World Cup. Monet quote:

The problem, white former players tell us, is that our team is not chosen on merit. They are right. Racial bias does hobble our cricketing progress. But the problem is not the measures designed to give black players a chance. It is prejudice that assumes, instinctively, that competence is something whites have and blacks must prove they have.

Those who doubt that South African team selection is still heavily influenced by this prejudice need to consider these questions: Why was Makhaya Ntini, the third-highest international wickettaker in our history, dropped for our first World Cup match played on a pitch which suited his bowling?

I agree with Friedman's broader point about black people having to show competence while competence is assumed in whites. Why else would otherwise reasonably intelligent people choose Graham Smith - a petulant, overweight, insecure bully - as the Protea captain? Don't want to sound like my mother, but the fact that he continuously chews gum on the pitch just adds insult to injury. The selectors should do some affirmative firing and send him packing.


Anonymous said...

Friedman is such a moron. Ntini was dropped because he wasn't bowling well.

He proves the very point he argues against. The cricket team can't drop a Black player without it becoming a race issue.

Anonymous said...

So the meat-head chews gum; but at least he had to good grace to admit that the Proteas lost for no other reason than they were outplayed.

Byzantine said...

As much as I despise Graeme Smith he atleast did take some accountibility which is a very rare thing in our country.

Before the CWC a lot of people especially black people said how in rugby there is discrimintation against black players and we all should look at the TRANSFORMATION made in cricket. But now that we have lost the white man is blamed again ???