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Proteas captain Temba Bavuma reacts to Quinton de Kock’s decision not to take the knee

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Oct 26, 2021

Proteas captain Temba Bavuma has reacted to teammate Quinton de Kock’s decision to not take the knee.

De Kock opted out of the Proteas side after Bavuma had just won the toss and elected to field against the West Indies at the T20  Cricket World Cup. 

Proteas were looking for their first T20 Cricket World Cup win

After the narrow loss to Australia on Saturday, the Proteas would’ve been determined to make amends for their unconvincing display. Captain Bavuma would entrust his bowling charges to do the early damage on the West Indian batting attack. But before he and the rest of his charges could even take to the field, the team was embroiled in yet another fresh bout of controversy. 

CSA issued out a directive to kneel

On Tuesday morning Cricket South Africa (CSA) sent out a press release confirming that they had delivered a directive to the Proteas team which enforces each and every squad member to take the knee ahead of all of the remaining T20 Cricket World Cup games. That was a directive that produced conflicting views and emotions all over social media. 

READ | PICTURE | TENSION BETWEEN CSA AND SNUBBED T20 CRICKET WORLD CUP PLAYERS? EAGLE-EYED DALE STEYN SEEMS TO HAVE SPOTTED SOMETHING

Others questioned why the Proteas had not ordered this directive prior to the tournament, while others argued if the gesture would be as genuine and have the same effect if it was seemingly forced on those who did not kneel last time out. Bavuma spoke on the directive and the timing off it.

Bavuma confirms when the team found out about the directive

“The players found out this (Tuesday) morning that we would have to take a knee. The timing off it was probably not ideal (chuckles slightly) but if it is some CSA wanted to be done, then we were going to have to deal with it at some point” Bavuma said speaking to the media in his post-match conference.

READ | PROTEAS ASSISTANT COACH ENOCH NKWE RESIGNS, STATES REASONS WHY

Bavuma was also asked about when he found out that de Kock was planning not to take the knee.

On when he found out that de Kock had pulled out

“I found out at there ground, it was probably a decision that de Kock would’ve made on the bus ride to the stadium. But I am just grateful that we could put out enough players to go out there and represent our country” Bavuma said. 

Bavuma was also asked about his reaction to de Kock pulling out.

His reaction to him Quinton pulling out

“I think obviously as a team we’re obviously surprised and taken aback by the news. Obviously Quinton (de Kock is a big player for the team, not just with the bat, but the role he plays from a senior point of view and from an experience point of view, and not having that at my disposal as a captain was obviously something I wasn’t looking forward to”. 

READ | AB DE VILLIERS’ REASONS FOR PROTEAS SNUB REVEALED

On his feelings on de Kock’s decision not to taking a knee, Bavuma lamented that de Kock was old enough to make his own decisions. 

“In saying that, Quinton is an adult. He’s a man on his own shoes, we respect his decision, we respect his convictions. I know he’ll be standing behind whatever decision that he’s taken”. Said Bavuma 

Will he be punished or replaced?

On whether or not de Kock would be punished or need to be replaced from the Proteas side, Bavuma admitted that was beyond his powers.

READ | OPINION | WOULD CSA PROTECT ANY OTHER COACH LIKE THEY HAVE MARK BOUCHER?

“Look, I don’t know how far it’s going to develop. I mean the decision that he’s taken in only today, so I can only speak about what has happened today. It wouldn’t be my decision whether to replace Quinton or get a substitute. That would be probably the coach and selectors” he said.

Bavuma also gave an idea of how de Kock is being received by the rest of the Proteas side. 

How the team received de Kock

“But as far as we (Proteas) stand, Quinton is still one of the players. He’s still one of the boys, so whatever support that he needs, whatever shoulder that he requires from his teammates, we’ll be there for him. If there is a further conversation to be had, I’m sure those will definitely happen amongst the guys”.

READ | IMRAN TAHIR OPENS UP ON PROTEAS T20 WORLD CUP SNUB

Bavuma also reiterated that he did not know what de Kock’s reasons were for not taking the knee.

Reasons still unclear

“I don’t know his (de Kock) reasons for not taking the knee, I may be his captain but I am not his spokesperson, so you would have to ask him. My position and that of his teammates is to understand where he is coming from with his views”. Concluded Bavuma. 

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