Former South African cricket legend Jacques Kallis has expressed his disappointment at the increasing political interference in the country's sporting affairs claiming that he was 'embarrassed' to call himself a South African. The former all-rounder was not very happy with the announcement made by Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula regarding South Africa's position on hosting of major international sporting events.
On Monday, 25 April, Mbualula announced that the Athletics South Africa (ASA), Cricket South Africa (CSA), Netball South Africa (NSA) and the South Africa Rugby Union (SARU) were suspended from bidding for, or hosting, major international events due to the federations not meeting their transformation targets.
This evoked a sharp reaction from the current Kolkata Knight Riders coach on Twitter. "So sad that I find myself embarrassed to call myself a South African so often these days #no place for politics in sport."
Black African representation has become a big issue in the country. The South African cricket team currently has only a 9% black African representation.
South Africa is not due to host any senior-team ICC events until at least 2023 but is scheduled to play host to the Under-19 World Cup in 2020. Now with these sanctions, Cricket South Africa (CSA) cannot actively lobby for hosting rights of any international tournaments until they are cleared by Mbalula.
CSA will be seeking clarity from the sports ministry on areas where they have failed, particularly on their transformation targets, with the communication manager Altaaf Kazi saying: "We need to review the contents of the report and understand where the transformation targets were not met before making any further comments."