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Former skipper Dane van Niekerk quits Proteas after ‘emotional, lonely and painful journey’

Former captain Dane van Niekerk has announced her retirement from international cricket

Former captain Dane van Niekerk has announced her retirement from international cricket. Photo: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix

Published Mar 16, 2023


Gqeberha — Former Proteas captain, Dane van Niekerk, officially announced her retirement from international cricket at 29.

She has brought a 14-year-long international career to an end on Thursday after 107 One-Day Internationals, 86 T20 Internationals and a solitary Test match.

Van Niekerk was sensationally overlooked for the recent ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa on the basis of failing a fitness test.

IOL Sport reported in January that the former skipper did not meet Cricket South Africa’s minimum requirement for the two-kilometre time trial.

During her career, Van Niekerk claimed 204 international wickets and scored 4 074 international runs.

The former captain will be remembered for her efforts on and off the field as she leaves the Proteas women’s team in a better space than when she found it back in 2009 when she made her debut. Van Niekerk has been an inspiration for many young boys and girls around the world in her playing career and has left a mark of note in the game of cricket.

Van Niekerk’s statement is as follows:

“It is with great sadness that I announce my retirement from international cricket.

“It has been the greatest honour to lead and represent my country. I am incredibly blessed to have led the team through its transformative years. There is no doubt that the women’s game is in an exciting space and looking forward to seeing this beautiful game that I love grow.

“I look back on my career fondly and have made incredible memories and want to thank Cricket South Africa and all other stakeholders for your support.

“Often the journey can be lonely, painful, and emotional, but would not change it for anything. I’m grateful for what this game has given me.

“To all the players that I had the privilege to have shared the dressing room and competed with, I will hold on to the memories dearly.

“We are merely custodians of this sport; I hand it over knowing I have given it my everything and that women’s cricket is in a better place than when I arrived. That must be the responsibility of the new group, to always make sure you are improving and making a difference. It is time for me to support the new leadership and wish them all the very best.

“To my amazing family. Thank you for your incredible love and support. From the age of four, you have seen the potential and did everything and anything to help me exceed. I will forever be grateful.

“My wife, Marizanne, you stood by my side since day one. Thank you for putting up with me and all that came with it, but yet, here you are. You are at the pinnacle of your career and it is my time to support you, the way you have supported me. I love you.”


IOL Sport