Pollock announces retirement
Shaun Pollock has said he will retire from international cricket at the end of South Africa's series against the West Indies.
Last Updated: 11/01/08 7:09pm
South Africa's Shaun Pollock has said that he will retire from international cricket at the end of the current series against the West Indies.
The 34-year-old made the announcement at close of play on day two of the third Test in Durban.
The ongoing Test is Pollock's 108th for the Proteas, while he has also played in 298 one-day internationals.
He has taken 420 Test wickets and claimed a further 387 in one-day internationals.
Although Pollock's batting form has tailed off in recent times, his current average stands at just over 32 in Tests and is more than 26 in the one-day game.
Having been overlooked by selectors for South Africa's last six Tests, Pollock only returned to the line-up this week - a decision that was vindicated on Thursday with figures of 4-35 in 11 overs.
However, Pollock seemed intent on going out on a high by announcing the end of his international career just 24 hours later.
"I'd like to thank Cricket South Africa for allowing me the opportunity of repersenting my country for the last 12 years," he said.
"I thoroughly enjoy the honour and privilege of wearing the Protea badge and take with me some remarkable memories having played against some great players.
"I realise I have been blessed by God and feel I have nurtured my talents to the best of my abilities."
Pollock added that, while the current Test against West Indies will be his last, he remains available for South Africa's upcoming five-match one-day series against the tourists.
He also said he would play in the Indian Premier League in April and May before deciding on his future.
"A few people have made me offers, but I haven't decided anything yet," he said.
"I'd like to take at least a year off to be with my family."
Speaking to Sky Sports News, former South Africa strike partner Allan Donald admitted he was "very shocked" by Pollock's decision to call it a day.
"I spoke to Polly just a couple of days ago and he was very upbeat about playing (in the third Test)," Donald said.
"He said he wanted to go to England (where South Africa will tour this summer) and he was really looking forward to doing that - so this really came as a shock to me."
Donald labelled Pollock a "legend", explaining: "What he did for South African cricket: with the ball when he first came in and then as a really good all-rounder.
"Cricketers around the world would possibly say that he under-performed a little with the bat and otherwise he could have done a little bit better - but I suppose that's a little bit harsh."
Donald added that, following his spell in the Test wilderness, Pollock may have been waiting for a recall before making his announcement.
"He's been out of favour with the South African selectors and they made it pretty clear they were going to go that route," he said.
"Maybe this is the time he waited for: to have the final Test match in Durban and say his goodbye."
Pollock later said he had made his decision before the start of the season.