Former fast bowler Makhaya Ntini recalled his time with the South African team, saying that he had been a victim of racism and always felt ‘alone’. He accused the then players of the team that they kept them apart. After the death of African-origin George Floyd in the US at the hands of a white policeman, he shared his experiences under the ongoing ‘Black Lives Matter’ (black lives also matter) movement around the world.
‘Nobody set in the breakfast room with me’
The 43-year-old, who took 390 Tests and 266 ODIs for South Africa, has shared the dressing room with veterans like Sean Pollock, Jack Kallis, Mark Boucher and Lance Klusener. Ntini is one of the 30 South African players who have voiced support for ‘Black Lives Matter’. He told the ‘South African Broadcasting Corporation’, ‘I was always alone at that time.’ He said, ‘No one used to take me along while going to eat food. The teammates used to make plans in front of me, but did not include me in it. Nobody used to sit with me in the breakfast room.
Because of this, he avoided going in the team bus
He said, ‘We wear the same uniform and sing the same national anthem, but I had to deal with all this (isolation).’ Antini said that in order to get rid of separatism, he used to avoid going by team bus and used to run behind the bus. He said, ‘I used to run after the bus to the ground giving my bag to the driver of the bus, in return I used to do the same.’
He said, ‘I used to try to run away from solitude. If I used to sit back in the bus, they used to sit forward. Whenever we used to win, the atmosphere used to be pleasant, but after losing the shard was blown on my head.
‘Son Thando has also faced racism’
Ntini said that his son Thando has also faced racism. He said, ‘My son Thando has also experienced this, he was almost stopped from going to the Under-19 World Cup camp. Apart from Antini, 30 players from South Africa signed a statement in support of the BLM movement, saying that racism is part of the game in the country. The Association of South Africa Cricketers and Cricket South Africa have also given statements in favor of the Black Lives Matter movement.