Domingo's bitter reaction to Rossouw exit

South Africa coach left frustrated by batsman's decision to accept county deal

Cricket Network

6 January 2017, 10:14 AM AEST

South Africa coach Russell Domingo says he is "very disappointed" in Rilee Rossouw's decision to effectively end his international career by signing a Kolpak deal to join Hampshire in the England County Championship.

Rossouw and fellow Proteas player Kyle Abbott will both join the county club, signing three- and four-year deals respectively, which make them ineligible to represent South Africa.

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Rossouw cited security for his family as the chief reason for his decision, however Cricket South Africa, through Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat, responded strongly and Domingo has continued the emphatic reaction. 

Rossouw ton against Australia last October

"I haven't heard from Rilee since we left Australia to be honest," he said. "Some of us have tried to get hold of him, and this is the truth, we got an email from him off his iPhone telling us he's signed Kolpak.

"He spelt my name wrong for starters; he wrote one 'l' instead of two.

"That's where we are. I am bitterly disappointed in him – that's the bottom truth.

"He toured Australia as the back-up Test batsman. He was the next batsman in."

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"He's played in most of the one-dayers and a lot of T20s. He's a guy we backed after five noughts (in the initial phase of his ODI career).

"We said this is a guy who can play the closest level to AB de Villiers in the one-day teams. We invested massively in him and we're very disappointed in his decision."

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The Kolpak rule entitles citizens who are from countries that have European Union Association Agreements to work in EU countries, which in the case of cricket means counties can sign those players without filling their 'overseas player' quotas.

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Theoretically, Abbott and Rossouw could again play for South Africa at the conclusion of their county deals, however Cricket South Africa have already made moves against that possibility, with Lorgat stating Abbott's contract had already been torn up, Rossouw's was in the process of also being terminated, and the pair would not be considered for future national selection.

"It is a disappointing day not just for South African cricket but also for international cricket as these players have given up their opportunity to be seen in action on the international circuit," Lorgat said.

"From CSA's perspective it is a loss as we invest immeasurable amounts which include premium time, finance, technical, high performance coaching followed by development tours and providing general player welfare over a long period of time."