Rabada shows support for BLM despite South Africa not taking a knee

‘Black Lives Matter will always be relevant’: Kagiso Rabada throws his support behind BLM despite South Africa choosing NOT to take a knee ahead of white-ball series against England

  • South Africa did not take a knee before their white-ball matches against England
  • Coach Mark Boucher said they didn’t need to ‘continue’ with the gesture  
  • Fast bowler for South Africa Kagiso Rabada has come out and supported BLM 

Kagiso Rabada has expressed his support for the Black Lives Movement despite South Africa’s decision not to take a knee before their white-ball matches against England.

South Africa’s outstanding fast bowler and a hugely significant figure in multi-racial South Africa appeared to distance himself yesterday from a team stance that saw coach Mark Boucher say the gesture is ‘not something we need continue to do.’

‘We spoke about it as a group and there are a lot of things to look at,’ said Rabada as South Africa prepared for Friday’s first Twenty20 international at Newlands.

Kagiso Rabada said he supports the BLM movement despite South Africa not taking a knee

‘Black Lives Matter will always be relevant and something I’ll always believe in but Mark has stated we won’t be kneeling and that’s how it is. It was a team decision not to kneel and I think to look at gender-based violence and devote ourselves to another cause.’

It is a subject that caused division in South Africa last summer after West Indies and England took the knee ahead of their three Tests and Rabada’s fellow fast bowler Lungi Ngidi leant his weight to the movement.

That led to criticism from a number of former South African cricketers, led by Pat Symcox and Boeta Dippenaar, who said Ngidi should concentrate on matters closer to home like the issue of farm murders in the republic.

Rabada, outstanding again in this year’s Indian Premier League, chose his words carefully yesterday but said Black Lives Matter was something ‘I will one hundred per cent always stand for’ and talked about wider social responsibilities facing all sportsmen.

South Africa coach Mark Boucher said they didn’t need to ‘continue’ with the gesture

‘As a sportsman, spreading the right message is important,’ he said. ‘It is a huge responsibility, the things you say and stand up for. We have seen the roles sportsmen have played in political movements during lockdown and I have expressed myself on twitter and on a few podcasts. I’m not getting in too hectically but I’m throwing my two cents in.’

Rabada also talked about the extra precautions South Africa have had to take to ensure the six white ball matches against England go ahead after two unnamed members of their squad tested positive for Covid-19.

‘It’s been quite bizarre actually,’ he added. ‘We have to train in groups now. There’s a non-contact group and a close contact one. 

‘It doesn’t mean anyone is positive, it’s just taking that extra precaution. That’s how it’s been. The team are doing well at sticking to the strict rules in place.’

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