Botha told to return to SA

2015-02-02 10:27
Johan Botha (Getty)

Cape Town - Former captain Johan Botha was informed he would not come into consideration for the Proteas' World Cup squad unless he returned to play his cricket in South Africa.

Botha, 32, has played 78 ODIs for South Africa and captained them to an historic ODI series win in Australia in 2009.

However, he last played an ODI or his country in 2011 and has been captain of state side South Australia since 2012.

Several cricket experts felt Botha would have been a welcome addition to South Africa's squad for the upcoming Cricket World Cup to be played in Australia and New Zealand.

In March 2012, Botha requested Cricket South Africa to release him from his contract after he conceded the T20 captaincy to AB de Villiers.

In an interview with Netwerk24, Botha said there were several reasons for his decision to move to Australia, but that they were all based on cricket.

"Back then, I really wanted to play more first class cricket, rather than touring with South Africa and not getting a chance to play. Here (in Australia), first-class cricket is the alpha and omega. T20 cricket is popular, but every player wants to play Test cricket."

However, Botha still harboured hopes of representing his country.

"This past winter I went back to South Africa to have a chat with Russell (Domingo, Proteas coach). I told him I am still available for selection and that I still want to represent my country.

"However, he made it clear that I had to play my cricket in South Africa if I wanted to be considered and that there was no guarantee that I would make the World Cup team."

Botha believes he still has a lot to offer the Proteas.

"South African rugby players can earn their money any place in the world and still play for the Springboks. Why can't that be the same for cricketers?" questioned Botha.

Read more on:    proteas  |  cwc 2015  |  johan botha  |  cricket

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