Former skipper of the South African national team Graeme Smith has withdrawn his candidature for the role of Cricket South Africa’s Director of Cricket citing the reason that he did not have the ‘necessary confidence’ to play out the role.
“I would have loved to have taken the role. However, despite my obvious desire to make a difference, during the long and, at times, frustrating process over the last ten weeks of discussions, I have not developed the necessary confidence that I would be given the level of freedom and support to initiate the required changes,” Smith wrote in a post shared on Twitter.
It was believed that Smith was the front-runner for the post and that he would eventually succeed in becoming the Director of Cricket in South Africa leading a new era in the Proteas’ cricket history and heritage. However, competing against him were CSA’s head of pathways Corrie van Zyl and former national selector Hussein Manack. Van Zyl’s candidature, in particular, was looked at with a degree of skepticism after he was under investigation two weeks ago over the apparent mishandling of players’ image rights at last year’s Mzansi Super League.
Van Zyl held the post of Interim Director of Cricket post the sweeping structural changes in the board set in place following the World Cup. According to the revamped structure, the Director of Cricket will be effectively responsible for all cricketing decisions within the system and will report to the Chief Executive of the board. Van Zyl, along with CEO ThabangMoroe, appointed the interim management team, selection panel for South Africa’s just-concluded tour of India.
Despite Smith’s reluctance to serve as a full-time Director now, the management in South Africa look at him with a renewed sense of hope and belief and hope that he can be a part of the administration someday.
“My passion for our nation’s cricketing fortunes remains steadfast and I give my heartfelt best wishes to whoever does take the role on. I will continue to support the teams and give my advice and guidance whenever I can,” Graeme Smith said
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