Kallis remains humble after Wisden accolade

April 10th, 2008 - 6:20 pm ICT by admin  

By Fakir Hassen
Johannesburg, April 10 (IANS) All rounder Jacques Kallis remains humble in the wake of being the first South African to be named Cricketer of the Year 2007 by the Wisden Annual. “Hopefully this award will help me take my playing to a higher level,” Kallis told the Afrikaans daily Beeld here from Kanpur, India, where the South African squad is preparing for the deciding game in a three-match Test series.

The Proteas are already one up in the series after they defeated India in Ahmedabad in the second Test.

Australians Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne, England’s Andrew Flinthoff and Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan have been among previous winners of this title.

“If one looks at the players (who have won previously) one realises how great the honour is,” Kallis said.

“I am very proud to play for South Africa and will continue to play while I have a passion for the sport.”

Wisden described Kallis as South Africa’s biggest performer since the country was readmitted to international cricket after decades of apartheid isolation.

Kallis dominated every match or series in which he played in 2007, even after he was left out of South Africa’s squad for the inaugural ICC Twenty20 tournament.

That omission and several issues before that saw Kallis clashing with his country’s cricket authorities and almost quitting international cricket.

There was a strange irony in the fact that Kallis, who was often referred to as “the don” in his early days by arch rivals Australia to unnerve him, last week bettered the record set by the legendary Australian Don Bradman when he hit his 31st century against India in Ahmedabad.

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