Former South African wicketkeeper Mark Boucher minced no words when he claimed that Cricket South Africa was in big trouble. Boucher told reporters that Mzansi Super League (MSL), SA’s version of Indian Premier League (IPL), cannot mask or solve Cricket South Africa’s problems. The Proteas are in spotlight after their 3-0 series defeat against India and their seventh-place finish in the ICC Cricket World Cup. CSA’s woes continued after three of its officials had to be suspended over allegation that they neglected their duties.
Interim director of cricket Corrie van Zyl, commercial manager Clive Eksteen, and chief operating officer Naasei Appiah were reportedly suspended after the South African Cricketers Association (SACA) launched a complaint about unpaid fees during last year’s MSL. The Tshwane Spartans coach said that he did not want people to think the T20 tournament is ‘sugarcoating’ problems within South African Cricket. He said that there were more pressing issues to be dealt with, and it felt like some were using the hype around MSL to sugarcoat the problems. Boucher added that South Africa had got themselves in a pretty bad state and hoped that there were some smart people around to turn things around for the beleaguered cricket board.
Boucher said that MSL was sure to receive all the support required this year, just like in the past. However, he cautioned that CSA had more significant problems that needed to be sorted out urgently for the good of the game. Boucher stated that there was a lot of negativity around South African cricket, and it saddened him. The Tshwane Spartans will kick-start their campaign against the Durban Heat at Kingsmead on Saturday.
In the last edition of MSL, the Jozi Stars were crowned the champions after defeating the Cape Town Blitz. South African Temba Bavuma will captain the Stars, and the Blitz will be led by Quinton De Kock this year. The Spartans have wicketkeeper-batsman Heinrich Klaasen taking up the mantle of captain.