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South Africa men's team to wear black armbands during series against England

ANI | Updated: Nov 25, 2020 20:36 IST


Johannesburg [South Africa], November 25 (ANI): Cricket South Africa on Wednesday announced that their men's team will wear black armbands in their upcoming white-ball series against England to extend solidarity against gender-based violence.
South Africa is currently observing '16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence', the international campaign to challenge violence against women and girls. The campaign runs every year from November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, to December 10, Human Rights Day.
"On November 11, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that South Africa would embark on five days of national mourning for the victims of Gender-Based Violence (GBV) and COVID-19. We, the Proteas, have taken the decision to answer the call by wearing black armbands during our next games, which fall during the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence. This is an act of solidarity in response to a particular issue that the country is focussing its attention on during the next two weeks," CSA said in a statement.

England and South Africa are slated to play three T20Is and as many ODIs, commencing from Friday, November 27.
"Our first job is to play cricket for the country but we are also citizens of this country. The Proteas team is a community within the wider Community of South Africa. The conversations that are happening in the country as a whole are conversations we must be engaging with as a team. The issues that are facing the country as a whole are issues that must matter to us as a team," the statement read.
On Monday, Proteas speedster Kagiso Rabada said that it was a team decision to not take the knee in their upcoming white-ball series against England.
Last week, Proteas coach Mark Boucher had revealed that the team would not be kneeling to show support towards the Black Lives Matter movement rather they would be extending support to the issues that the country's President Cyril Ramaphosa has raised.
"Black Lives Matter is one-hundred percent something I will always stand for and I speak for myself. It was a team decision not to kneel and to look at gender-based violence and devote ourselves to another cause," ESPNCricinfo had quoted Rabada as saying.
"However, Black Lives Matter will always be relevant and something I will always believe in and I speak for myself there. But, Mark has stated that the team will not be kneeling and that's how it's going to be," he had added.
However, Boucher also said that the Proteas players will consider wearing a black armband to show solidarity with the fight against gender-based violence and in memory of the victims of COVID-19, in line with a call made by Ramaphosa to declare November 25-29 national days of mourning.
During the 3TC game in July, players and all support staff including the director of cricket Graeme Smith wore black arm-bands and took a knee before the match to extend support to the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement.
Earlier this year, 31 former and current Proteas cricketers had signed a letter showcasing their support towards the Black Lives Matter campaign and pacer Lungi Ngidi.
Following this, Cricket South Africa (CSA), its board of directors and executive committee had reaffirmed their support towards the BLM movement, and its relevance in South Africa.
"We note the claims of discrimination and racism that have been made by current and former players and coaches, and we acknowledge that these are a part of the sport's past, and sadly, its present. We have to face the reality, as management and custodians of the game, that we need to come up with creative, tangible, and meaningful ways to address this -- even more, than we have done already -- to make sure that they are not part of our future," the CSA had said in an official statement in July. (ANI)

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