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Jacques Kallis retirement: He has been South African rock of Gibraltar, says Haroon Lorgat

Jacques Kallis retirement: He has been South African rock of Gibraltar, says Haroon Lorgat
Jacques Kallis made his Test debut at Durban against England on December 14, 1995 © Getty Images

 

Dec 25, 2013

 

Cricket South Africa’s (CSA) chief Haroon Lorgat paid tribute to legend Jacques Kallis, who announced that he will retire from Test and First-Class cricket after the second Test against India at Durban.

 

“Although we all knew the retirement of a great player like Jacques Kallis was going to happen sooner rather than later, his decision still comes as a blow when the reality dawns that Cricket South Africa’s greatest ever player and arguably the world’s best all-rounder, will be playing his last Test match in this last week of 2013 when the Sunfoil Series concludes against India at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead,” Lorgat was quoted as saying by Cricket South Africa’s official website.

 

“Jacques Kallis has simply been the Proteas rock of Gibraltar. He has been a stalwart for many years and their recent triumphs and greatness has been built around him. He is a legend and his statistics speak volumes. He has the 10th highest ICC batting points ranking of all time (935) and the highest by a South African. As for the number of Test centuries scored, he is second only to Sachin Tendulkar and he is statistically the greatest all-rounder of all time.

 

“Jacques has been ever present for the Proteas in the past 18 years and it is fitting that his final Test should be on the same ground as the one on which he made his debut against England back in 1995.”

 

“Only Jacques would know how much strain his body can still take and while we will be very sad to see him walk off the Test arena for the last time, we can be buoyed by the knowledge that he wishes to represent us at the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup in Australasia. What great satisfaction it will be to Jacques and the rest of us if the Proteas can triumph at the World Cup.”

 

“We were reminded again this past weekend what he means to the Proteas and what some of our opponents might well call an unfair advantage that he gives us! When Morne Morkel was ruled out of the match through injury he simply stepped into the void, cranked up the speed gun and put his body on the line to deliver what we needed.”

 

“Like all great players Jacques’ contribution cannot just be measured in runs, wickets and catches. He has been a tremendous source of inspiration and a mentor to some of his younger peers and I am sure that super stars like Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy and Faf du Plessis would be the first to admit how much they relied on him.”

 

“As the then convener of selectors I still have vivid memories of the way Jacques guided the 20-year old AB through the proverbial nervous nineties to his maiden Test century at SuperSport Park against England in early 2005. Each of his colleagues will surely have memories of their own which made Jacques such a special team mate. I will never forget his run of five consecutive Test centuries in 2004 when in the first innings in New Zealand, with no DRS he was wrongly given out lbw in the nineties and alas, we all thought that’s a record missed! But Jacques said ‘There is still a second innings’. And would you believe it, he scored a hundred in the second innings.”

 

“On behalf of the Cricket South Africa family, all our fans and indeed on behalf of the nation, I am privileged to extend our grateful thanks to Jacques for what he has contributed to South African cricket and in the process to nation building. He has certainly played his part in making our cricket a truly national sport of winners.”

 

“I look forward to see how in the years ahead we can engage his superb knowledge and experience. He is far too valuable and no doubt will have much to offer,” he concluded.

 

Read more here Jacques Kallis retires from Test and First-Class cricket

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