Jacques Kallis, the South African legend has announced his retirement from International cricket. The 38-year-old, one of the greatest all-rounders that the game has ever produced had quit Tests last year and has decided to give up limited overs career after the recently concluded one day series against Sri Lanka. Kallis had been planning to finish his cricketing career at the 50 over World Cup to be played in Australia and New Zealand in February and March next year. However, the multi-talented cricketer had a change of heart after his poor run of form in the recently concluded series and surprised everyone by calling it quits just 6 months before the mega event. He scored 0, 1 and 4 in his last three One Day Internationals.
Kallis however will continue to play T20 franchise cricket for Sydney Thunder in the Big Bash League, which is held in Australia and for Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premiere League. The lanky cricketer finished his ODI career with 11,579 runs which included 17 centuries and 86 fifties in 328 matches. He played 25 T20s for his nation, scoring more than 650 runs. Kallis played his last test match against India in Durham in December 2013. He finished his test career with 13,289 runs which included 45 centuries and 58 fifties in 166 matches. His test average was 55.37 and he is the only South African cricketer to have scored more than 11,500 runs in both Tests and ODIs.
“I realized in Sri Lanka that my dream of playing in a World Cup was a bridge too far,” Jacques Kallis said in a statement. The all-rounder added, “I just knew on that tour that I was done. The squad that was in Sri Lanka is an amazing one and I believe they have a good chance of bringing the trophy home in March. I would like to thank Cricket South Africa, the team, the team sponsors, my sponsors, the fans and all the people who have been involved in my career. It has been an amazing journey”.
Injury and form did not help his cause in Sri Lankan series, in which he scored only 5 runs across 3 ODIs and did not bowl in any of these matches. However, the selfless cricketer that Kallis is, he knew his boundaries and would not become a hindrance in his team’s path to lift their maiden World Cup in 2015. The living legend, who is the only cricketer to have scored more than 10,000 runs and take 250 wickets in ODIs and test cricket bows out with dignity!
“I am not retiring from all cricket as I have a two-year contract with the Sydney Thunder and, if possible, to help the Kolkata Knight Riders defend the IPL title we won earlier this year”, he said. The cricket fans across the globe will now be eagerly waiting for IPL and BPL to see their favourite star in action.