Jonty Rhodes on white privilege: My statistics were average when I was picked for South Africa

Written by Rohit Pawar

Former South Africa batsman Jonty Rhodes opened up about white privilege that existed in South Africa cricket, saying he was picked for the senior national team despite his average numbers.

The racial composition of South Africa cricket teams has been a major talking point over the years and Jonty Rhodes feels cricket needs to learn from South African rugby when it comes to providing opportunities for youngsters from “disadvantaged communities”.

Speaking to reporters from The Hindu, The New Indian Express and The Deccan Herald in Bengaluru, jonty Rhodes said he was literally competing with only white cricketers in the lead up to his maiden senior team call-up.

“I certainly benefited from the fact that I wasn’t really competing with 50% of the population. I literally was competing only with the white players. You talk about white privilege and it raises a lot of heat and debate on social media but it is the case. I’m very aware of that. My cricketing statistics as a player were very average when I was selected,” Jonty Rhodes said.

“If I was competing with the rest of the country then possibly I wouldn’t have been picked. And I would not have been diving around the field.”

Over the last 3 decades, South Africa’s previously all-white team has changed dramatically. With transformation quotas introduced to redress the imbalances of the apartheid era, South Africa must include at least 2 black players and 4 other players of colour in their playing XIs.

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Rohit Pawar

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