Tabraiz Shamsi Opens Up On Racism In The Proteas Environment
Tabraiz Shamsi
Tabraiz Shamsi aims to damage the batting line-ups during the 2019 World Cup in England. Image Courtesy: Getty

Tabraiz Shamsi Opens Up On Racism In The Proteas Environment

Tabraiz Shamsi, the South Africa spinner on Monday said that he is yet to experience racism personally respecting the views of everyone which formed his key point of discussion from the recent culture camp held in Skukuza.

An extended 32-member squad including a high-performance squad consisting of nationally contracted players, South Africa A squad, as well as players who are in the plans to be included in the senior team for the near future were part of the culture camp. An updated values system that held respect, empathy, and belonging were highlighted as the prevailing focus point.

Tabraiz Shamsi
Tabraiz Shamsi. Image Courtesy: Getty

Tabraiz Shamsi Never Experienced Racism In Proteas Environment

Tabraiz Shamsi has played only 2 Tests, 22 ODIs, and 22 T20Is where he has picked up 6,26 and 17 wickets averaging more than 35.

“I think for me, the biggest thing was that as a group we realized that there’s a lot of strength in being able to communicate, rather than just sitting and assuming,” Shamsi said in an official release issued by Cricket South Africa (CSA).

Tabraiz Shamsi
Tabraiz Shamsi

“In the Proteas environment, I’ve never personally experienced any racism. The past players have spoken about it and how things were not equal and stuff like that. I think even the players that did make it, had to go through some hurdles that they shouldn”t have had to experience if there was a level playing field,” he added.

The spinner also said that racism and discrimination should be given zero tolerance and should be taken away from the system by eradicating.

“That’s the biggest thing that we need to acknowledge and understand. We need to ensure that kind of stuff is not tolerated and taken away from the system,” Shamsi said.
“As a group of players, we need to create that bubble and ensure it doesn’t happen.”

“We need to understand that we are one and we are going out there to fight as a team.We must understand where we’re coming from,” he added.

Although none of the current batches of players have indicated that they have been subject to racial discrimination, stories from cricketers as recent as Aaron Phangiso – who last played for South Africa in early 2018 – have exposed divisions in the set-up, which Cricket South Africa (CSA) is now aiming to address.

Tabraiz Shamsi Is Optimistic About Future Of South Africa

The 30-year-old, who has 49 wickets in 46 matches across all formats for the Proteas, is also optimistic about the future of South Africa despite the team currently undergoing changes following the retirements of senior players.

The likes of JP Duminy, Hashim Amla, Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander all retired in the recent past, but Tabraiz Shamsi feels the youngsters coming through have a bright future ahead.

“We always want to improve and get better,” he said. “We’re in a unique position at the moment where most of our senior players retired in a big clump and experience is something you can’t buy.”

Tabraiz Shamsi
South Africa’s Tabraiz Shamsi, left, celebrates the dismissal of India’s Shikhar Dhawan, right, during the third and last T20 cricket match between India and South Africa in Bangalore, India, Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

“It leaves a massive gap yes, there aren’t natural successors to some of these players, but the way I look at it is that we’re a young group with many players that can step in.”

“I am a positive person and this leaves us in a unique position. We all know each other having played against each other in domestic cricket for so long so I think we can look forward to a bright future,” he signed off.

Faf Du Plessis is a notable absentee as his wife is expecting the birth of a second child while Theunis de Bruyn is unable to travel due to family reasons. The players’ list includes Aiden Markram, Andile Phehlukwayo, Anrich Nortje, David Miller, Dean Elgar, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Lungi Ngidi, Quinton de Kock, Rassie van der Dussen, Tabraiz Shamsi, Temba Bavuma, and others.