JOHANNESBURG: Outraged by the exclusion of South African players from the ICC annual awards nominations, Cricket South Africa CEO Gerald Majola has questioned the credibility of the list, saying he can't figure out the selection criteria.
"To me, it looks like the only way to get on these nomination lists is to play the Ashes," Majola fumed.
"Unfortunately, our players don't play for England or Australia. That seems to be the criteria to select these awards. I don't know what the criteria are for these nominations but I simply can't believe that this has happened to South African players," the CSA chief said.
"My personal opinion is that this doesn't lend credibility to this year's awards, for sure. To rub salt to our wounds, the awards ceremony is being held in our country," he added.Tendulkar wants top spot for India to mark 20 years
None of the South African cricketers were picked for the final nominations, dominated by Indians, Englishmen and Sri Lankans.
Majola said the selection panel for the awards' nominees seems to have completely ignored the Proteas' excellent Test and One-day performance last year, during which they also became the world's number one side in both forms of the game.
"I am totally dismayed and disappointed. The last season was one of the best ever for South Africa and there were a lot of outstanding performances by our players," Majola said.
"In my personal opinion, there were at least three South African players who should have figured on the shortlist. But I am not going to name them because I don't want to drag our players into this issue when they are preparing for the Champions Trophy. I haven't spoken to them about this either," he added.
Former pacer Allan Donald, who was a part of the selection panel, said he had nominated a couple of Proteas players and was surprised to see none making the final list.Gambhir wins Castrol best cricketer of 2008 award
"I am surprised to see that there is no one from South Africa in the final list," he said.
The nominations for the individual awards were voted by a five-member ICC panel headed by Clive Lloyd, the ICC's cricket committee chairman. The panel included Anil Kumble, Mudassar Nazar, Bob Taylor and Stephen Fleming.