Cricket: Ross Taylor and Quinton de Kock announce retirements

There have been two major retirement announcements in the last 24 hours, the first being Kiwi legend Ross Taylor. 

Ahead of their two-match Test series against Bangladesh, starting on New Year’s Day, Taylor has announced plans to retire from international cricket at the end of the home summer.

Taylor, 37-years-old, captained his country in 2011 and 2012 and was part of the team which reached one-day World Cup finals in 2015 and 2019.

He debuted in 2006 and has played 110 Tests, 233 one-day internationals and 102 T20 internationals, scoring 18,074 runs.

He will bow out with two Tests against Bangladesh and then a total of six ODIs against the Netherlands and Australia in early 2022.

“It’s been an amazing journey, and I feel incredibly fortunate to have represented my country for as long as I have,” said Taylor, who is the only player to play 100 times in each international format.

“But all good things must come to an end, and the timing feels right for me.”

Taylor also hit the winning runs when New Zealand won the World Test Championship final against India in June.

If you like the sentimental bet, then Taylor is 7/2 with Betfair to be New Zealand’s top run-scorer in the opening Test against Bangladesh at Mount Maunganui this weekend.

Taylor, however, has gone 13 Tests without a century dating back to December 2019 – against Australia at Perth. His last home century came a Test Match before against England at Hamilton in that November.

De Kock retires from Test Matches immediately

Quinton de Kock was due to miss the second and third Tests of the ongoing home series against India due to paternity leave, but the 29-year-old is surprisingly stepping away from the format altogether. 

In a statement released on Thursday, he said: “I have taken a lot of time to think about what my future looks like and what needs to take priority in my life now that Sasha and I are about to welcome our first child into this world and look to grow our family beyond that. 

“My family is everything to me, and I want to have the time and space to be able to be with them during this new and exciting chapter of our lives.

“I love Test cricket, and I love representing my country and all that it comes with. I’ve enjoyed the ups and the downs, the celebrations and even the disappointments, but now I’ve found something that I love even more.

“This is not the end of my career as a Protea, I’m fully committed to white ball cricket and representing my country to the best of my ability for the foreseeable future.

“All the best to my teammates for the remainder of this Test series against India. See you in the ODIs and T20s.”

The first Test defeat against India at Centurion was de Kock’s 54th and last, in which time he has scored 3,300 runs with six centuries. He has also taken 221 catches with 11 stumpings. 

De Kock’s next major assignment with South Africa will be the T20 World Cup in Australia at the end of the year. The Proteas are 10/1 to win that competition for the first time with bet365. 

If you think South Africa can get back into the ongoing three-match Test series against, which continues at Johannesburg from Monday, they are an unlikely 17/2 shot to win it with the same company.