De Kock announces retirement from Test cricket, intends to spend more time with family

Written by Abhishek Patil

In a stunning development, South Africa’s experienced wicketkeeper-batter Quinton de Kock has announced his retirement from Test cricket with immediate effect. The 29-year-old stated that he has made the decision to spend more time with his family.

De Kock scored 34 and 21 in South Africa’s 113-run loss to India in the first Test of the three-match series in Centurion, which ended on Thursday. He was due to miss the second and third Tests against India having taken paternity leave, but has now decided to quit the format altogether.

In an official statement released by Cricket South Africa, De Kock admitted that the decision was not an easy one. But the southpaw said that he wants to spend more time with his family going forward.

De Kock’s statement read:

“This is not a decision that I have come to very easily. I have taken a lot of time to think about what my future looks like and what needs to take priority in my life now that Sasha and I are about to welcome our first child into this world and look to grow our family beyond that. My family is everything to me and I want to have the time and space to be able to be with them during this new and exciting chapter of our lives.”

De Kock’s statement added:

“I love Test cricket and I love representing my country and all that it comes with. I’ve enjoyed the ups and the downs, the celebrations and even the disappointments, but now I’ve found something that I love even more. In life, you can buy almost everything except for time, and right now, it’s time to do right by the people that mean the most to me.

The South African keeper-batter also thanked his teammates and coaches while asserting that he is fully committed to playing white-ball cricket for the country. De Kock’s statement further read:

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been a part of my Test cricket journey from the very beginning. To my coaches, teammates, the various management teams and my family and friends – I couldn’t have shown up as I did without your support.”

He concluded by stating:

“This is not the end of my career as a Proteas, I’m fully committed to white ball cricket and representing my country to the best of my ability for the foreseeable future. All the best to my teammates for the remainder of this Test series against India. See you in the ODIs and T20s.”

De Kock led South Africa in four Tests after being appointed temporary Test captain at the start of the year. Under him, the Proteas beat Sri Lanka 2-0 at home but lost in Pakistan by the exact margin.

De Kock made his Test debut against Australia at Port Elizabeth in 2014, scoring 7 and 34. The left-hander finishes his red-ball career with 3300 runs, including six hundreds and 22 fifties, in 54 Tets at an average of 38.82.

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Abhishek Patil