Johannesburg, May 10: Less than a fortnight after acquitting former captain Graeme Smith of racism charges, Cricket South Africa (CSA) gave the go-ahead on Tuesday to another former Proteas player and current manager, Mark Boucher, saying “there is no basis to support any of disciplinary charges.” , including charges of racism” against him.
The CSA board said it was “formally” and “unreservedly” dropping all charges brought against the former batsman-keeper.
The CSA Board had received a report from the independent Ombudsman for Social Justice and National Construction (SJN), Dumisa Ntsebeza in December 2021 that had “tentative findings” adverse against Boucher. But because the Ombudsman was not in a position to make “definitive findings”, he recommended that further processes be carried out to “achieve finality” on the issue.
CSA then initiated proceedings based on the recommendations of the SJN Report, giving Boucher an opportunity to respond to the allegations.
The charge sheet against Boucher included the tentative conclusion made by the SJN Ombudsman, as well as issues that arose from CSA’s own investigation following the resignation of Proteas assistant coach Enoch Nkwe.
“The CSA Board has now made the decision to formally drop all disciplinary charges against Boucher. This includes the charges stemming from the SJN report and the charges stemming from the investigation following Nkwe’s resignation. CSA has made this decision taking into account the following considerations: “(Paul) Adams (former SA left-hand man) recently announced that he had withdrawn from testifying against Boucher during the disciplinary hearing. In doing so, Adams claimed that the concerns he articulated from him during the SJN process were about the general “culture” on the Proteas team in the early 2000s, rather than being about any one player in particular.
“Nkwe decided that he, too, did not wish to testify against Boucher. Nkwe stated that he did not intend to take sides with Boucher and that “whatever happens in that process, I hope the outcome will be the best for the game.”
CSA ultimately concluded that none of the three charges against Boucher were tenable.
The recent ruling by Hamilton Maenetje and Michael Bishop in the Graeme Smith arbitration had indicated that the charges against Boucher would also be dismissed.
Lawson Naidoo, chairman of the CSA board, said after the ruling that “CSA has at all times been committed to dealing with SJN issues in a manner that treats them with the utmost seriousness but also ensures fairness, due process and The Drop Charges decision finalizes these issues for CSA and Mark (Boucher) and allows the focus to return to the cricket pitch, where we are confident Mark and the Proteas will become stronger and stronger.” Pholetsi Moseki, CSA CEO, said: “CSA and Boucher have discussed the way forward and have committed to an open dialogue and commitment to advance the best interests of South African cricket to achieve CSA’s strategic goals of access, inclusion and excellence. We reiterate that Mark Boucher, Paul Adams and Enoch Nkwe remain valued members of the CSA coaching fraternity.”