Morne Morkel to leave international cricket after South Africa-Australia Tests

South Africa fast bowler Morne Morkel has announced the upcoming four-game Test series against Australia will be his last assignment in international cricket. 

Morne Morkel to leave international cricket after South Africa-Australia Tests
Reuters

South Africa fast bowler Morne Morkel has announced the upcoming four-game Test series against Australia will be his last assignment in international cricket. 

"Cricket is what I love," Morne told reporters in Durban on Monday at a press conference.

"Playing for the Proteas is something very special (but) family comes first."

The 33-year-old, who made his international debut in 2006 against India, has represented the Proteas in 83 Tests, 117 ODIs and 44 T20Is, taking 529 scalps in all. 

Talking about his favourite moments in Test cricket, the lanky pacer said: "When I made my debut in 2006 against India was very special. 

"Becoming the No.1 Test team, beating Australia in Australia, England in England, so many right now running through my mind."

If Morkel takes six wickets in the series against Australia, he will become the fifth South African bowler after Allan Donald, Shaun Pollock, Makhaya Ntini and Dale Steyn to take 300 wickets in the longest format of the game. 

Morkel also represented Delhi Daredevils, Rajasthan Royals and Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League (IPL). 

Australia batsman Usman Khwaja paid tribute to the Proteas quick. "He's a world-class bowler, he has been for a long time," Cricket.com.au quoted Khawaja as saying.

"Even more so he's a great bloke. Every time I see him off the field he's always smiling, always saying hello.

"It's really nice to see that when you meet someone for the first time. I wish him all the best," he added. 

The first Test of the South Africa-Australia rubber will commence on March 1 at Durban's Kingsmead. 

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