26th October – Cronje confirms worst suspicions

No matter how insincere he is and how many lies he tells, there will always be people who love Hansie Cronje. Or so it seems.

Lawyer Les Sackstein’s current battle to overturn the UCB’s attempts to impose a life ban on Cronje confirm the worst, most bitter cynicism from the former SA captain’s camp.

It gives me no pleasure to say this, but this column suggested a couple of days ago that the UCB needed to put Cronje’s self-imposed ‘ban’ in writing and make it official – just in case it was hollow rhetoric. Now we know it was.
Nothing Cronje says can be taken at face value. Nothing to do with cricket, anyway. When he said that he would have nothing to do with cricket during the King Commission it was, at best, an emotional outburst, and at worst a cynical, calculating attempt to throw the dogs off the trail while he carried on the hunt.

Free State cricket would love to have Cronje back in it’s ranks and everybody within the game in South Africa knows it. A year (or even two) lieing low and building a ‘low profile’ was all that Cronje was required to do before re-entering the game. For a man who has made approximately five million rand out of the scandal, forging a plan to continue his involvement in the game is nothing.
The United Cricket Board have, unfortunately, made a mistake in the way they conducted the ban, however. Without a hearing they have not followed the principles of natural justice – Audi alteram partem – in other words, “hear the other side”.

Perhaps Sackstein has only challenged the ban on ‘principle’. But don’t bet on it.

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