Cape Town: Cricket South Africa (CSA) will pay a special tribute to Jacques Kallis on March 30 during the New Age Cup T20 International match between the Proteas and India at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium.
“We want to make this a Jacques Kallis evening in which we acknowledge his huge contribution to the Proteas and South African cricket generally as player, role model and mentor,” commented CSA CEO Gerald Majola.
“He has been a wonderful ambassador throughout his career that has just entered its 17th year and is showing no sign of coming to a close. It is highly appropriate that we should honour him while he is still at the height of his powers,” Sports24 quoted Majola, as saying.
“As a cricketer, he is unique both in terms of statistics and the role he has filled in the Proteas’ team. The only comparable all-rounder the world has seen is the great Sir Garfield Sobers, and even he only batted in the top four for the first half of his career.”
“It was wonderful to hear on television recently another great South African cricket legend, Barry Richards, describe Kallis as the best all-rounder of all time,” said Majola.
“As part of our tribute we will be making a special donation to the Jacques Kallis Scholarship Foundation which as we all know is Jacques’ own outstanding contribution to enabling underprivileged youngsters to live their dreams on the cricket field.”
Kallis said he felt humbled and honoured to be given this tribute.
“It is something I really appreciate. Cricket South Africa has given me wonderful opportunities to live the dream I have had from the moment I picked up a cricket bat for the first time. Playing for the Proteas has always been a huge privilege and I would also like to thank our loyal fans and sponsors who have supported me every step of the way,” said Kallis.
“I have also been fortunate to avoid career-threatening injuries or illness and I am most grateful for that as well. I believe I still have plenty of petrol left in the tank and look forward to representing my country for some time to come. I would particularly like to thank Cricket South Africa for their financial contribution to the Jacques Kallis Scholarship Foundation, which is highly appreciated.