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NEIL MANTHORP: Is World Cup history about to repeat itself?
If Faf du Plessis and Ottis Gibson had lost faith in Hashim Amla, they would have asked for his exclusion and it would have been Zondi’s unenviable task to take public responsibility for it
Everybody knows that history repeats itself, but the cycle is shorter and quicker in sport than in most other walks of life. The more things change, the more they stay the same. There is always something to hit or kick and the requirements for speed and strength do not change. Neither does the debate about the value of experience. When selection convenor Peter van der Merwe announced a list of 20 names in a preliminary squad for the 1992 World Cup, and it didn’t include Clive Rice (42), Jimmy Cook (38) and Peter Kirsten (36), people were up in arms. A lot of people. There were petitions and even threats. Kepler Wessels, who was appointed as captain, was painted as the villain of the piece even though he was, in fact, in favour of the trio being included. Or at least of Kirsten’s inclusion. Van der Merwe tried to be as diplomatic as possible in the face of the hue and cry describing the trio as “great players” whom their country “would always be grateful to”. However, le...