Proteas

Domingo: I could be sacked tomorrow

2017-01-16 07:26
Russell Domingo (Gallo Images)

Johannesburg - A loss in a World Cup semi-final, a 3-0 Test series defeat in India and then a 2-1 Test series loss at home to England. 

After those three disappointments, Proteas coach Russell Domingo was a dead man walking. 

Cricket commentators and fans alike were questioning his ability and many were outraged by the fact that he had not been held accountable for what were considered a series of unacceptable performances. 

Now, a year after that England series, things could not be going better for South African cricket's national team. 

A 5-0 ODI triumph at home to Australia was followed by the memorable 2-1 Test series win in Australia, and with a 3-0 Test whitewash against Sri Lanka now complete, there is an unmissable optimism currently accompanying Domingo's charges across all three formats. 

It was fitting, then, that Domingo was asked to talk about those tough times of a year-or-so ago after he had just witnessed his side win by an innings and 118 runs in the third Test against Sri Lanka in Johannesburg on Saturday. 

"I had to go. Not this person, or that person ... I had to go," Domingo remembers of the public outcry at the time.

Domingo these days looks a far more confident figure than he did back then. His rant at Rilee Rossouw and Kyle Abbott after the second Test in Cape Town proved that. 

For far too long he was a coach that seemed afraid to say the wrong thing or upset the wrong person. 

These days, and ever since the culture camp held halfway through last year that sought to clear the air of the problems facing the national side, Domingo is a man who speaks his mind. 

And on Saturday he provided some reasons for why he thought the South African public was so angry when things were not going according to plan in 2015 and early 2016.

"I was saying to someone the other day, and I am not comparing, but South African cricket has got more challenges than most other nations in the world," he said.

"That’s the truth. In terms of finances, in terms of Kolpaks, in terms of the make up of the team. That’s just the way it is.

"Other teams maybe don’t have to deal with it ... teams like England.

"Yet, we always tend to find ourselves in the top three more times than not.

"There’s a lot to be appreciative of about the way South African cricket operates and the way the players go about their business. Not many teams face the sort of challenges we face. Maybe the public at times just expect you to be No 1 at absolutely everything."

There is no doubt that Domingo has had an up and down tenure as Proteas coach ever since he was appointed back in 2013.

And the tough times are potentially the reason why he is not getting too lost in the current success of this team. 

"I could go tomorrow. Nothing is certain," he said, bluntly.

"I by no means look too far ahead in my coaching career. I take it one series at a time. You never know what’s around the corner in coaching."

But, just how close was he to getting the sack?

"I’ve always felt that the support that I’ve got from the players is the most important thing," he said.

"If you’ve still got the support of the players, that’s all that matters. I’ve always felt I had that.

"It’s out of my control, what happens, happens."

Read more on:    proteas  |  russell domingo  |  johannesburg  |  cricket
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