South Africa’s Amla retires from international cricket

FILE PHOTO: Cricket - ICC Cricket World Cup - Sri Lanka v South Africa - Emirates Riverside, Chester-Le-Street, Britain - June 28, 2019 South Africa's Hashim Amla walks after being dismissed for LBW before the decision is reversed following a review Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith/File Photo

CAPE TOWN (Reuters) – South Africa’s Hashim Amla announced his retirement from international cricket on Thursday, bringing the curtain down on one of the country’s leading batting careers.

The 36-year-old played international cricket for 15 years, scoring almost 10,000 test runs and close to another 10,000 in limited overs internationals.

He is the only South African to have scored a triple century in test cricket – a record 311 not out against England at The Oval in mid-2012 – and is second behind Jacques Kallis in test runs for the country (9,282).

“I learnt many lessons during this incredible ride, made many friends and most importantly shared in the love of a brotherhood,” he said in a statement released by Cricket South Africa (CSA).

His retirement follows swiftly on from that of his fast bowling colleague Dale Steyn and is no surprise after a disappointing World Cup in England in May and June.

Amla struggled initially at test level, with his batting technique heavily questioned, but after a first test century against New Zealand at Newlands in 2006 he established himself as a key player in the South Africa set-up.

He went on to top the International Cricket Council rankings for both test and ODI batsmen.

Amla was appointed test captain in 2014 but gave up the job during England’s visit to South Africa at the beginning of 2016 when it was affecting his form.

“It is always sad to bid farewell to one of the true legends of the game, but at the same time this is rather an occasion to celebrate the richness that Hashim has brought to the game around the world both on and off the field,” said CSA chief executive Thabang Moroe.

Amla will continue to play domestic cricket.

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