Hudson to quit as selection chief

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The former Dolphins and South Africa opening batsman, who turned 50 last month, gave as his reasons a desire to fully focus on his career as a banker as well as family life. He follows the Proteas’ bowling coach, Allan Donald, who quit earlier this month.

Hudson yesterday made himself unavailable for nomination, and therefore re-election, as convener of the panel he has presided over since May 2010. Nominations for a new convener and selection committee must be in by Thursday next week.

Hudson’s co-selectors are Shafiek Abrahams, Hussein Manack and Linda Zondi. The current panel has one remaining task – choosing Test, ODI and T20 squads for the Proteas’ tour of Bangladesh in July – before it is dissolved.

Hudson said: “Having been in the system for five years has been a real privilege and honour for me.

“To be No 1 in Test cricket for a large part of my tenure and No 1 in all three formats during Gary Kirsten’s time was very special. We have also seen the emergence of young, exciting players who will be around for many years to come. I was committed to transformation at the highest levels and achieved CSA guidelines throughout my tenure.”

In a period of stormy political volatility, in which issues of transformation in sport have been intensely debated, Hudson’s tenure has been relatively uncontroversial aside from the still burning issue relating to team selection for the World Cup semi-final against New Zealand.

Hudson would not be drawn on that matter, but the president of the South African Cricketers’ Association (SACA), Tony Irish, alluded to it when praising Hudson.

“On behalf of the player group I would like to thank Andrew for the job he has done as convener of selectors over the last five years. In a Proteas context the convener has to deal with a number of unique factors in the selection process. It’s a tough job and the recent controversy over selection in the World Cup in New Zealand is an example of what he has had to deal with.”

Hudson’s transformation record is impressive. Unlike at franchise level where there are firm quotas, at national level the softer “target” is four players of colour and Hudson’s record holds up well.

In Tests, 168 players of colour have represented the country in 40 matches with an average of 4.2 playing per match; in ODIs 441 players have played in 102 matches (4.32) and in T20s, 224 players were chosen in 50 matches (4.5). On one occasion, in an ODI in Centurion in November 2013, seven players of colour participated in a victory over Pakistan.

One of his regrets will inevitably be the lack of an ICC trophy in the cabinet. “Winning an ICC event is foremost on our agenda,” he said two years ago. “We’re all keen to get that monkey off our back.” Sadly, defeat against New Zealand in Auckland last month means the monkey clings on. - Cape Times

The convener of selectors for Cricket South Africa, Andrew Hudson, will step down in June from the job he has held for five years.

Original source: Hudson to quit as selection chief

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