South African fast bowler Morne Morkel has announced he will retire from all forms of international cricket at the end of the upcoming Test series against Australia, which starts on Thursday.
With the Proteas, the 33-year-old has played 83 Tests, 117 One-Day Internationals and 44 T20 Internationals in a career spanning 12 years.
In the forthcoming series against Australia, Morkel will be aiming to pass the 300-wicket mark. He is currently sitting on 294.
A tough decision
On Monday, Morkel cited family pressures as the cause for his retirement.
“It was an extremely tough decision but I feel the time is right to start a new chapter. I have a young family and a foreign wife, and the current demanding international schedule has put a lot of strain us,” Morkel said in a Cricket South Africa news release.
“I have loved every minute that I have played in the Proteas jersey, and I am incredibly grateful to my teammates, Cricket South Africa, and my family and friends for the support over the years.
“I still feel there is a lot of cricket left in me and I am excited for what lies ahead. For now, all of my energy and focus is on helping the Proteas win the upcoming series against Australia.”
Moroe praises Morkel
Cricket SA’s acting chief, Thabang Moroe, praised Morkel’s commitment and contribution towards South African cricket.
“He has been a regular selection for both the Standard Bank Proteas Test and ODI squads since 2008, having made his debut as far back as 2006. He has formed part of the golden era of fast bowlers that have made the South African Test team a champion outfit that is respected throughout the world.”