Under-19 cricket captain replaced over ‘security concern’

Henry

Cricket South Africa (KSA) will replace its under-19 cricket captain, David Teeger, with another captain for the duration of the under-19 Cricket World Cup, which starts next week in South Africa, due to security concerns.

In October, when he was named rising star of Absa’s awards for Jewish excellence, Teeger said that the real stars are young soldiers in Israel, referring to the conflict between the latter and Hamas.

“Yes, I got the award, and yes, I’m a rising star, but the real stars are the young soldiers in Israel,” Teeger said.

This triggered an uproar and KSA ordered an independent investigation into the young cricketer’s Israel statements. Adv. Wim Trengove SC headed the investigation to determine whether Teeger breached KSA’s or Gauteng Lions’ codes of conduct with his statements. He found that Teeger had not violated any codes or acted unconstitutionally.

KSA now says, as with all other similar events, it receives regular safety and risk analyzes about the World Cup.

“We have received information that protests related to the war in Gaza can be expected at venues for the tournament,” says a statement from KSA.

The information also indicated that the protests were likely to focus on Teeger’s position.

“There is a risk that this could give rise to conflict or even violence, including demonstrations between hostile groups.”

KSA says it has a primary duty to ensure the interests and safety of everyone involved in the tournament and that the organization must respect the recommendations of those responsible for the safety of participants and spectators.

“Under the circumstances, KSA decided that David (Teeger) should be relieved of the captaincy for the duration of the tournament. This is in the best interest of all the players, the SA U19 team and David himself.

“David will remain an important and active member of the team and we wish him and the team every success in the tournament.”

An announcement about the captain for the tournament is expected later.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) decided at the end of last year to move the tournament from Sri Lanka to South Africa, after the former country was suspended due to its government’s interference in the management of the sport.

The tournament now starts next Friday in South Africa, after the new host country had little time to prepare for the spectacle.