Rule change could alter selection landscape

Times Media

TELFORD VICE, Cape Town

TWO members of SA’s current selection panel would be ineligible for their positions in terms of rules enforced after they were appointed.

One of them, Linda Zondi, has done what was needed to meet the requirements. The other, Hussein Manack, has not and his tenure seems set to end when Cricket SA’s (CSA) board meet on Tuesday to discuss naming a new selection committee.

The board could also come up with a replacement for Allan Donald as SA’s bowling coach, a vacancy that Charl Langeveldt – the team’s death bowling consultant at the 2015 World Cup – has been tipped to fill.

Asked on Monday if those two issues would be resolved at the meeting CSA president Chris Nenzani said, “It depends if all that needs to be done has been done.”

With convenor Andrew Hudson having stepped down after five years in the hot seat, the selection panel was always going to be different.

But Manack could also be on the way out because he is a Gauteng Cricket Board (GCB) director and chairs the Lions’ selection committee.

No-one who is employed by or serves on domestic structures is eligible to be a national selector, a measure that was either not in place or disregarded when Manack and Zondi were appointed in July, 2013.

However, Times Media has established that Manack has been nominated for another term.

Manack would be a viable successor to Hudson as convenor were it not for his conflicts of interest. That said, there is no evidence of Lions players having been favoured during his tenure.

Some might wonder whether Manack’s presence in the SA camp at the World Cup was why the Lions’ Quinton de Kock kept his place in the team despite scoring 53 runs in his first six innings at the tournament.

But another Lion, Aaron Phangiso, was the only member of the squad not to play a single match at the World Cup.

Zondi left his job as the KwaZulu-Natal Cricket Union’s township development manager at the end of April, apparently to clear his path to stay on the panel.

Dolphins chief executive Pete de Wet said on Monday he was “not at liberty to say” whether Zondi had been put forward by KZN to continue as a selector.

The other member of the existing committee, Shafiek Abrahams, is in the running again. As the panel’s senior man he could be the next convenor.

Or not: Times Media has learnt that Ashwell Prince has the backing of at least two provinces.

Prince comes with the credibility earned by playing 66 tests as well as a reassuring seriousness that should help him rise above squabbling with the suits – and others – who will try to tell him how to do his job.

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