Proteas coach unhappy, levels counter-charges against CSA

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Durban, Feb 8 (UNI) The ghost of apertheid continues to haunt South Africa as coach Mickey Arthur levelled a counter-charge against Cricket South Africa (CSA) President Norman Arendse, after he refused to approve the squad for the Bangladesh tour because it doesn't include enough black players.

''Yes, there is animosity between us,'' Arthur said. ''I told him he was power-crazy and egotistical but I never swore at him.'' Arthur's comments come in the wake of his argument with Arendse in a teleconference yesterday to sort out the team's selection.

The squad was scheduled to be named on February 5, but Arendse reportedly refused to approve the team chosen by the six-man selection committee as it contained less than seven coloured players.

''I've taken him on about this team. The transformation policy that Arendse wants to be applied does not exist. He is out of bounds. I told him he was not a selector and should keep his nose out of team selections. I can say now that he regularly sends back teams,'' Arthur said.

''What's his problem? We have a good, established team and with the exception of one match we have fielded four black players in every Test this season,'' he added. ''I don't know where he gets the idea that there should be seven black players in the touring team.'' Arthur's outburst prompted Arendse to allege that the coach had behaved in a ''disrespectful'' and ''abusive'' manner in the meeting, and had laid disciplinary charges against him indicating that CSA policy about team selection was not being followed.

''If a coach says, 'There's no transformation policy' (among selectors), if he says, 'Sorry, I'm not prepared to implement CSA's policies', then his position is untenable,'' Arendse said.

Arthur, however, levelled a counter-charge against the President.

''Unfortunately I felt I had no choice but to do likewise (file a counter-charge),'' Arthur said. ''The president accused me of all sorts of things apart from failing, or even refusing to implement CSA's (Cricket South Africa's) transformation policies.

That is simply untrue.'' ''The president's implication would appear to be that I prefer to select white players over black players, which is deeply insulting and hurtful,'' he added, saying,''(Coloured players like) Hashim Amla, Charl Langeveldt and JP Duminy have all established themselves in the national squad in my time as coach while Ashwell Prince became the country's first black captain.'' The Proteas are due to tour Bangladesh later this month with the first Test at Dhaka from February 22-26.

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