South African Cricketer Quinton de Kock, Who Refused to Kneel, Retires from the Sport

Quinton de Kock (Frank Augstein / Associated Press)
Frank Augstein / Associated Press

Quinton de Kock, the former South African cricket captain who refused to kneel for his country’s national anthem in solidarity with the radical left-wing Black Lives Matter movement, retired suddenly from the cricket world last week.

De Kock cited a desire to spend more time with his family; indeed, his wife gave birth to their first child on Thursday.

However, an unspoken reason for his departure may have been the hostile reaction he faced from cricket officials and the media when he refused to play rather than kneel for South Africa’s national anthem, which is seen as a symbol of unity.

As Breitbart News reported in October:

South African cricket star Quinton de Kock withdrew from a major international competition Tuesday rather than follow a new policy requiring players to kneel for the country’s national anthem in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.

De Kock, who was named South Africa’s “Cricketer of the Year” in 2020, and who has served as the team’s captain, made himself unavailable for the team’s T20 World Cup match against the West Indies on Tuesday, rather than be forced to kneel.

The South African national anthem, Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika, combines the African-language song of the anti-apartheid struggle with the anthem of the prior regime, Die Stem, in English and Afrikaans. It is considered a symbol of multi-racial unity.

According to South African news website IOL, De Kock refused to divulge his reasons to the press, but was apparently upset at the new policy. He had been the only member of the team to stand for the anthem on a recent tour of the West Indies.

Former cricket great Shaun Pollock said he expects De Kock might return, once the restrictions of the coronavirus are over.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book is How Not to Be a Sh!thole Country: Lessons from South Africa. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

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