Pommie Mbangwa Quinton de Kock

Photo by Grant Pitcher / Gallo Images

‘I cannot shed my skin’: Pommie Mbangwa’s powerful message to Quinton de Kock

Pommie Mbangwa called it how he saw it on Tuesday, after Quinton de Kock decided to withdraw from the SA team instead of ‘taking a knee’.

Pommie Mbangwa Quinton de Kock

Photo by Grant Pitcher / Gallo Images

Zimbabwe cricketer-turned-commentator Pommie Mbangwa emerged as one of the most critical voices of Quinton de Kock’s choice to drop out of the Proteas team on Tuesday, following a disagreement over taking the knee.

Quinton de Kock: Why some people refuse to take a knee

Told just hours before South Africa’s clash with the West Indies at the T20 World Cup got underway, almost everyone on board the team bus – apparently where the players first received their directive from Cricket SA to take a knee before each remaining game of the tournament – seemed to be in agreement about the stance they would take.

Quinton de Kock, however, proved to be the exception. He made it clear that he would, quite ironically, not stand for the gesture – due to his indifference towards the Black Lives Matter campaign and some of its alleged political aims.

Pommie Mbangwa delivers powerful message to QDK

The Proteas won by eight wickets yesterday, and it’s pretty disappointing that the shine has been taken away from such a magnificent victory. Temba Bavuma led the side, as both the bowling unit and batting line-up performed splendidly. Alas, the fallout from de Kock’s actions has been nuclear – and Pommie Mbangwa was left seething.

Mbangwa, who was on commentary for the group stage game on 26 October, said that Quinton’s decision ignored South Africa’s deep-rooted history with ‘exclusion and racism’. He also told the glovesman that he ‘could not shed his skin’, suggesting that there is nothing political about how much his life matters…

“I speak because the team concerned is South Africa with a history of exclusion and racism. Lack of support for the initiative essentially means a lack of support for people of colour within the team, in SA and in the world as a whole. Excuse me if I sound political, but I can’t shed my skin.”

Pommie Mbangwa