“I really appreciate all the opportunities and am truly grateful,” said Hashim Amla. Photo: Rui Vieira/AP

Proteas stalwart Hashim Amla has decided to retire from all forms of international cricket.

Amla made the announcement via a Cricket South Africa press release on Thursday.

The 36-year-old enjoyed a glittering career on the biggest stage, and became one of the finest international batsmen of his era.

His retirement follows shortly after another Proteas legend, Dale Steyn, said this week that he will quit Test cricket.

“Firstly, all glory and thanks to the Almighty for granting me this Proteas journey which has been nothing but a joy and privilege,” Amla said on Thursday.

“I learnt many lessons during this incredible ride, made many friends and most importantly shared in the love of a brotherhood called #proteafire.

“I would like to thank my parents for their prayers, love and support, it is their shadow over me that enabled me to play for years under the Protea sun. 

“Also, my family, friends and agent, my teammates and every member of the support staff throughout this incredible journey. A heartfelt thank you to every one of you!

“The fans for energising me when times were tough, and for celebrating with me when we succeeded together. Siyabonga South Africa!

“And, of course, a very special thanks to the President and the Board at Cricket South Africa – not forgetting the chief executive, Mr Thabang Moroe, and his administrative team. I really appreciate all the opportunities and am truly grateful.

“Love and peace.”

Renowned for his ability to whip the ball with his wrists, Amla fought back from being dropped from the Proteas team in the early stages of his career to become one of the greatest batsmen in South African cricket history.

Amla set a South African Test record score of 311 not out against England at The Oval in 2012, and was the quickest to several run milestones in the ODI format.

Amla finished with an excellent Test record of 9 282 in 124 matches, with 28 hundreds and 41 half-centuries at an average of 46.64.

His one-day statistics are as good, if not better, with 8 113 runs in 181 ODIs, with 27 tons and 39 fifties at an average of 49.46.

Amla’s fluency in white-ball cricket seemed to leave his game in the last 12 months, though, and his father’s illness was another contributing factor to a disrupted World Cup build-up.

The right-hander wasn’t at his best in England as the Proteas failed to reach the semi-finals, but there is no doubt that Amla will be remembered forever in the annals of not only SA cricket, but around the world.

He has stated that he will also continue to play domestic cricket in South Africa.

“It is always sad to bid farewell to one of the true legends of the game,” Cricket SA chief executive Thabang Moroe said.

“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.

“His humility has always been his standout quality, and I cannot imagine a better role model to teach us all how to lead better lives. He has added great value not only to the Proteas, but to the country at large.

“I am sure cricket players, administrators, the media and fans from around the world will join the CSA family in congratulating Hashim on a job well done, and to wish him all the best for the future.

“We can indeed be grateful that he remains available for our domestic cricket, and will continue to contribute by passing on his rich cricket and life experiences to our next generation of players.”

@ashfakmohamed


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