Graeme Smith: It's In South African Players Hands To Stay Or Not For IPL 2021 But CSA Offer Support
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It’s In South African Players Hands To Stay Or Not But CSA Offer Support: Graeme Smith

South Africa's Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith Image Source : ICC South Africa's Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith Image Source : ICC
South Africa's Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith Image Source : ICC South Africa's Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith Image Source : ICC

Graeme Smith, South Africa’s Director of Cricket on Monday said that the country’s cricket board has offered support to their players in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 after positive Covid-19 cases were reported in the league. However, Graeme Smith said the players have been given the choice to decide about their stay in India, which has been badly hit by the second wave of Covid-19 pandemic.

There are as many as 11 South African players featuring in the IPL 2021. None of them are part of the Kolkata Knight Riders squad though as the franchise had two positive Covid-19 cases on Monday. However, the likes of Faf du Plessis, Lungi Ngidi, and Imran Tahir are part of Chennai Super Kings whose bowling coach Laxmipathy Balaji tested positive on Monday.

Imran Tahir
Imran Tahir (Image Credit: Twitter)

Graeme Smith Offered Support To Players But It’s In Their Hands To Make A Choice To Stay Or Not For IPL

Meanwhile, it has emerged that the BCCI has asked Delhi Capitals to isolate themselves after their match against KKR on April 29. Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje are integral members of the Delhi unit, which is at the top of the IPL 2021 points table.

Graeme Smith
Graeme Smith Source: Bloomberg www.bloomberg.com

“We’ve offered support to the players and made ourselves available to them should there be any concerns,” Cricket SA’s Director of Cricket Graeme Smith was quoted as saying by iol.co.za.

“Ultimately, it is in their hands to make a choice (continued participation).”

Notably, as many as 3 Australian players namely Andrew Tye, Kane Richardson, and Adam Zampa left India before the Australian government closed its borders for citizens heading back from India in a much-criticized move. New Zealand has also banned flights from India but South Africa has kept its borders open with travellers needing to submit a negative test report within 72 hours of travelling.

11 South African Players Are Participating In The IPL 2021

A COVID-19 outbreak left the star-sprinkled IPL on tenterhooks as Kolkata Knight Riders’ Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier tested positive for the dreaded virus, forcing a postponement of their game against Royal Challengers Bangalore, while cases also came to light in the Chennai Super Kings camp.

Kagiso Rabada
Kagiso Rabada. Image Credits: Twitter

As many as 11 South African players, including former white-ball skipper Quinton de Kock, pacer Kagiso Rabada and former captain Faf du Plessis, are currently participating in the IPL for various teams. While there are no Proteas players in KKR, Faf du Plessis, Lungi Ngidi, and Imran Tahir play for Chennai, whose bowling coach Laxmipathy Balaji and a bus driver have tested positive.