“Absolutely Broken,” : Dané Van NieKerk reacts after her exclusion from World Cup Squad

Cricket South Africa (CSA) with an expected yet brave call has announced a 15+3 squad for the upcoming, International Cricket Council (ICC), Women’s Twenty20 World Cup, that’s scheduled to be played in South Africa from the 10th to the 26th of February. The mega ICC event sees successive title winners, Australia in as defending champions, eying a hat-trick.

 

Dane Van Niekerk. PC: Getty Images
Dane Van Niekerk. PC: Getty Images

 

The unexpected yet brave call is that the regular skipper, Dané van Niekerk has failed to make the cut to the South African squad for the T20 World Cup after having failed to meet CSA’s fitness requirements and the side will now have Suné Luus as the skipper.

Dané van Niekerk has played little cricket since an ankle injury saw her miss the 50-over World Cup in New Zealand, the multi-format series against England, and the Commonwealth Games in the United Kingdom. The 29-year-old hasn’t represented her country since September 2021 having last featured in the series against West Indies and was also dropped from the side’s ongoing Tri-Series.

Clinton du Preez, women’s selection convener, stated, “Dane was given an extensive opportunity to meet the minimum criteria for the fitness benchmark. She recently did another fitness test and did not meet the minimum criteria and that’s why she has missed out. “

“Dane did not meet the minimum requirement for the 2-kilometre time trial (Understood to be 9:30 for 2-km and van Niekerk was timed over 18 seconds). The management assisted her into trying to get there but she did not meet the minimum requirement. The skill set of Dane as a cricketer will always be missed on the cricket field. We have reminded her of that. We also appreciate the effort she tried to put into meeting the fitness level.”

“It’s about remaining consistent with our decisions. Many other players have gone down this route. Everyone is quite familiar with the situation and what is required. In December, we set it out clearly with where she needs to be.”

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Meanwhile, Dane van Niekerk posted a bunch of cryptic messages on her Instagram. To a post, she captioned, “#10kgsandcounting.” Another post read, “God doesn’t call the qualified, he qualifies the call. For as long as you’re called in any path, you’ll always find your way. You’ll always be ok. You are a force. Remember that.” Following the snub, her recent posts’ caption read, “Absolutely BROKEN”.

Dane van Niekerk isn’t the first who’s come under the spotlight for failing to meet CSA’s fitness requirements as it previously was Lizelle Lee who was threatened of not receiving a No Objection Certificate (NOC) to play in overseas competitions if she did not meet minimum standards.

Like Dane Van Niekerk, who’s currently spending time at the training to meet the CSA standards, Lizelle Lee too on the road but it wasn’t a long run as she soon had made up her mind to call it time on her international career.

(Quotes sourced from ESPN Cricinfo)

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