Quinton de Kock of South Africa has apologised for refusing to take the knee during his team’s Twenty20 World Cup match and stated that he would be “happy” to do so.
“I’d like to begin by apologizing to my teammates and the fans at home,” de Kock said in a statement Thursday.
“I never intended to make this a Quinton problem.” I recognize the importance of speaking out against racism, as well as our responsibility as players to set a good example.
“I am more than happy to take a knee if it helps to educate others and improves the lives of others.”
De Kock withdrew from Tuesday’s match against the West Indies for “personal reasons,” defying Cricket South Africa’s borders to their players to follow the anti-racism gesture. They took action after images emerged from the team’s first game against Australia over the weekend, in which some players knelt while others stood.
De Kock, a former captain, and wicketkeeper-batsman refused to take a knee during South Africa’s recent Test series in the West Indies.
Temba Bavuma, the national cricket team’s first black African captain, said de Kock’s decision and the events that followed were the most difficult days of his life. The Proteas, on the other hand, won the match convincingly by eight wickets in Dubai. They play Sri Lanka in Sharjah on Saturday, and de Kock is expected to return.