Abbott: No 'sour grapes' towards CSA

2017-02-10 18:47
Kyle Abbott (Gallo)

Cape Town - Former Proteas fast bowler Kyle Abbott harbours no bad feelings towards Cricket South Africa (CSA) over his decision to leave South Africa for English county side Hampshire.

Earlier this year, Abbott confirmed he had signed a four-year Kolpak deal with Hampshire, citing "security" as his main motivating factor for heading north.

After making his Test debut in February 2013, Abbott has struggled to establish himself in the Proteas' set-up, having played 11 Tests over the past four years.

Abbott was also involved in one of the most controversial moments in South Africa's World Cup cricket history, after being dropped from the side at the last hour to accommodate the return of injured Vernon Philander for their semi-final loss against New Zealand.

He confessed that he came close to giving up on international cricket after the controversial decision.

"I always felt like I was close to being dropped and I think I had good reason to (leave)," Abbott told BBC's Stumped.

"I was dropped after some pretty decent performances for South Africa, from my debut to the World Cup.

"I always felt no matter what I did, I was always on the verge of being dropped for someone better or for a new player."

Proteas coach Russell Domingo said that Abbott was the guy he had backed to take the new ball at the ICC Champions Trophy in June.

However, Abbott claims that despite those notions, his departure has been a "long time coming" and he needed to make a decision over his future.

"At the moment I don't have any regrets, I don't have anything bitter or any sour grapes towards Cricket South Africa," said Abbott.

"I wouldn't be able to play cricket in England or sign a Kolpak deal if Cricket South Africa never have given me the opportunity. I'm at peace with them, I don't think I've burnt any bridges and they'll still my mates.

"I still speak to the coaching staff even during the Sri Lankan series, so I'm feeling very comfortable in my decision."

Abbott joined Dane Vilas, David Wiese, Rilee Rossouw, Colin Ingram, Stiaan van Zyl, Simon Harmer and Hardus Viljoen to leave the Proteas for greener pastures.

The fast bowler took a comical stance over the Proteas Kolpak crisis, saying that an exhibition match could take place when the Proteas come to England later this year.

"So when they (Proteas) come over, I'll show them a bit of Hampshire and maybe put together a Kolpak XI to play a warm-up game against them," joked Abbott.

Abbott, 29, played 11 Tests, 28 ODIs and 21 T20 internationals for South Africa.

Read more on:    proteas  |  kyle abbott  |  cricket

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