March 4, 2014

'The heartbeat of the team'

ESPNcricinfo staff
Reaction from around the world after Graeme Smith announced his retirement

"He has been a mighty warrior, a leader of men and an exceptional part of our international cricket. Following the recent retirement of Jacques Kallis from Test cricket, there is no doubt that we are now ready to move into a new era and it is our job to build on the solid foundations that these great players leave behind."

Haroon Lorgat, the CSA chief executive

"He's a guy who has always played under a lot of pressure ... he has always found the inner strength to make sure he concentrates on his own performances, and he leads the team irrespective of what perceptions of him are, his presence alone will be sorely missed."

Russell Domingo, the South Africa coach

"I thought he had a year or two, look everyone's situation is different, maybe it is a good time for him to move on, he's obviously got his reasons, his personal reasons. I'd rather look back to a superb career, and just say congrats on what he has achieved over many years."

AB de Villiers, the South Africa batsman

"He's been the spearhead of our team for a number of years, leading the team from age 22, he's been the heartbeat of the team ever since, he will be sorely missed." JP Duminy, the South Africa batsman

"@GraemeSmith49 biff,a career to be proud of and a leader who lead from the front!! Our 3 triple century partnerships,my highlight! Congrats."

Herchelle Gibbs, the former South Africa opener, on Twitter

"Hearing huge news out of SA. @GraemeSmith49 is retiring! For what he has done for SA cricket - the man is a legend! Congrats my Surrey BFF!"

Kevin Pietersen, the former England batsman, on Twitter

"What a magnificent career @GraemeSmith49 has had as captain and batsman.He can retire knowing he achieved great things in his time."

Pat Symcox, the former South Africa spinner, on Twitter

"Congrats @GraemeSmith49 on a wonderful career. Still chuckle at him calling me Peter Schmeichel on tour of 04. #bettergoaliethangloveman"

Geraint Jones, the former England wicketkeeper, on Twitter

"An immense contribution to SA cricket and the game at large. Wonderful career. Congrats and all the very best @GraemeSmith49, #CheersBiff"

Mpumelelo Mbangwa, the former Zimbabwe seamer, on Twitter

"Huge congrats @GraemeSmith49 on an outstanding career for SA. Great leader and player. SA will miss him @surreycricket welcome him back."

Alec Stewart, the former England captain, on Twitter

"Another great leaves the international circuit @GraemeSmith49 what a legend. Huge loss for SA"

Azhar Mahmood, the former Pakistan allrounder, on Twitter

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Varun on March 5, 2014, 3:59 GMT

    Fantastic cricketer: one of my favorites. Best opener of the last decade, and superb captain.

  • Raghu Nadh Reddy on March 4, 2014, 23:55 GMT

    we miss you Smithy,you are the legend and a true captain.and your are a gem of character in the field.

    we really missing the great warrior.

  • Y on March 4, 2014, 19:23 GMT

    Amazing career of a great entertainer and a leader...much respect for my second favorite team member....SriLankan fan

  • Dummy4 on March 4, 2014, 19:21 GMT

    miss u smith.huge loss for sa and international cricket

  • Android on March 4, 2014, 16:16 GMT

    biff ur making many cry

  • Dummy4 on March 4, 2014, 8:08 GMT

    Best captain during his early days of captaincy with most attacking mindset. Will never forget the game when he led south africa's batting reply in the historic chase of 430+ against australia. A Team's mindset reflects most of the time the captain's mindset which plays huge part in result of matches. will miss to see your leadership qualities on the cricket field though of late, it has not been the greatest. Wishing you all the best !!

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