Shaun Pollock's tribute December 28, 2013

'You'd pick Jacques for another year or two'

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Jacques Kallis and Shaun Pollock made their Test debuts within a month of each other and played together for 13 years. Pollock retired five years ago and has since been a commentator, watching Kallis craft his remarkable career. On Kallis' retirement from Test cricket, Pollock spoke to the media about the man he called "the greatest allrounder of my generation."

The first time I heard of Jacques Kallis was when Western Province went on a pre-season tour to Australia. He scored a big hundred or 200. That was the first time there was talk of the ability he had and the fact that he could be a man for the future. Then I played against him a couple of times and went on the Under-23 trip to Sri Lanka, where I got to know him.

Being a fellow allrounder and being of the same age, we gelled with each other and spent a lot of time together. From that moment, you knew Jacques was a class player. He didn't take to Test cricket as quickly as he could have but thank goodness the selectors stuck by him.

When he first came in, Jacques was a giggly kind of person and he used to laugh at a lot of things. He had a good sense of humour at times. On that Under-23 trip, he was struggling with the heat and he came in and said, "I need some petrol for my radiator," which probably wasn't right. He was also one of those guys who appreciated humour like, if someone would hit a shot and it would go and hit the rubbish bin, he would say, "That was a rubbish shot." Or you'd hit it into the tree and he would say, "That's a tree-mendous shot." That was his kind of humour. He enjoyed a good laugh.

In the 438-game, I didn't play because of a back spasm. When the guys came back to the change room, it was a bad environment because everyone was really quiet. It was still. There was no humour. Jacques was the last to get into the change room and he said, "Well guys, the bowlers have done their job, they're ten runs short of what they should have got. Let's go and get it." And everyone burst out laughing.

As he got older, Jacques became very serious about what he wanted to achieve. I can remember him having a chat with Bob Woolmer where Bob said to him, "You need to take your standards to the next level. You are averaging a certain amount, you need to go to the next level," and he did.

There was no doubt he was the backbone. He understood, when he matured, that he wanted to be more significant in his contributions. We needed to him the backbone. He did change his game as the years went on and got really good at it.

He has been the catalyst for many South African batsmen. Many guys were averaging around 40 and he raised the benchmark. Look at Graeme Smith, AB de Villiers, Hashim Amla, all the guys that came after set themselves new standards of what is a good average.

Often Jacques used to get motivated by anger, but it was never outright anger. He used to channel that energy and used it to motivate him. Like that Sri Lanka game in the 1999 World Cup, he was angry for some reason and when we gave him the ball, he charged in and tried to bowl at the speed of light, and he did. That was what made his bowling special. He operated at 130 kph for his entire career and had the ability to go to 140 kph at times. He never shied from his duties as a Test bowler. One-day cricket, every once in a while it was like, "Do you really want me to bowl?" but in Test cricket he was fantastic. To have him as a fourth seamer, and then have a spinner in the second innings has been so vital to South Africa.

Jacques has been lucky. I can think of very few injuries. He has had the odd hamstring. He has played the odd game where he has only been able to bat. I remember him having his appendix out in Pakistan in 1997. But that's about it. He wouldn't describe himself as a fitness freak, who ran and went to gym, but he did what he had to do and he was very successful.

When T20 cricket came about, and even at the end of his one-day career, he had the ability to up the ante. There was a bit of criticism leveled at him at the beginning of his career that maybe his strike rates were too low, but he developed. Certain people can do certain skills well and others have to work at it. He was prepared to work at his game to get it to where he needed it to be.

There were instances when there were certain comments passed. He would vent privately, or keep it to himself, or maybe make the odd comment to one of us. But he didn't get vindictive about it. He would just use it as fuel to motivate himself to perform. He would be man enough to confront anyone on a certain issue but he wouldn't make mountains out of molehills. Unless there was something that really upset him, he would just let it ride.

In the 438-game, I didn't play because of a back spasm. When the guys came back to the change room, it was a bad environment because everyone was really quiet. It was still. There was no humour. Jacques was the last to get into the change room and he said, "Well guys, the bowlers have done their job, they're ten runs short of what they should have got. Let's go and get it." And everyone burst out laughing

As international sportsmen you sift through criticism all the time. Jacques would have asked himself if it was constructive and whether he should change, or decided he was doing his job for the team. If he had any doubts, he would have probably bounced it off captains and coaches. He would have taken criticism on board, looked to adjust and try and be the best Jacques Kallis he could be.

We talk about his bubble. It was his great strength. He stayed in his bubble for a long time. The best thing as a captain was to make sure he was in his bubble. Leave him in there and let him get on with it.

He didn't speak much but when he did, people listened. If Jacques was speaking, it was important. He wouldn't come up and just give you an idea that was from left field. He would have put a lot of thought into what it should and shouldn't be.

If he is honest, he will say he was always someone who shied away from captaincy. He knew his strengths were in batting and bowling, and I didn't think he ever wanted to take that extra responsibility of having to captain. He never had an issue about who was or wasn't captain.

A lot of people say he hasn't got the accolades he deserved and I've often wondered why. The people you would be comparing him to are Ricky Ponting, Sachin Tendulkar, Brian Lara and maybe Rahul Dravid. Jacques was never a big one for the media, didn't want to give too many opinions or go to too many press conferences. He tried to keep everything to himself and maybe that could be the reason why Lara, for example, got more recognition.

Lara was flamboyant. He got two world records and that drew a lot of attention to him. Sachin, we all know, for coming in at 16 and having the reputation that he did in India meant that he got a lot of accolades. Jacques just did his business, being the backbone of our batting line-up for a long period of time.

Even his bowling contributions, he would pick two or three wickets but there weren't many performances that brought attention to him. He was always there doing his part and that's why he always slipped under the radar. It's also a case of maybe a prophet in your own land. We appreciated him here but maybe we didn't give him as much attention as maybe someone like Sachin or Ricky Ponting got.

Some of the pitches that we've had in South Africa haven't been easy. Jacques made it look easy and managed to get big runs. I know that if I had played for India on some of those surfaces, I wouldn't have had the average and career I had with the ball. So I'm sure if Jacques had played on some flatter wickets, maybe he would have had a better record. But you'll never be able to say, and maybe he wouldn't have got as many wickets.

Jacques would have been thinking a lot about when to retire. You could see in the UAE, in the last Test match - he was always quite relaxed and reserved at the best times - but you did get the feeling that something was playing on his mind. Credit to him. I think the time to go is when you're on top. You don't want people to start talking about, is it time or isn't it time?

He also wouldn't want to let anyone down. His mother passed away at a very early age so it was his dad and his sister. His dad made a lot of sacrifices for him and he supported him throughout his career. When he gets hundreds, he always acknowledges his dad. Jacques always came across to me as a very loyal person, whether it was to sponsors or to friends. He always respected people for the value they added to his life.

Jacques will be missed. To replace a cricketer like him, you need two guys. You talk about a true allrounder as being a guy who can hold his place as a batsman alone or as a bowler alone. Jacques could do that. From a team perspective, he was wonderful to have around. You always knew what you were going to get, he never caused a stir or fuss in the change room.

I'm just happy he announced it before this Test match. Jacques is the kind of character who easily could have said after this Test, "That's it, I'm done, I don't want the fuss of what goes on." I'm glad he is going to get some fuss because his efforts deserve it. I'm glad he has given people the opportunity to say thank you.

If he wanted to play in the next Test, you'd pick him. In fact, you'd pick him for another year or two. I think the timing for him is right. He realises the body isn't capable of doing what he wants to do and I'm just happy he announced it before this Test match. Jacques is the kind of character who easily could have said after this Test, "That's it, I'm done, I don't want the fuss of what goes on." I'm glad he is going to get some fuss because his efforts deserve it. I'm glad he has given people the opportunity to say thank you.

Going forward, the key for the team is going to be balance. If you take Jacques out of this line-up, do you shift the batting order up and slide in someone like [Ryan] McLaren at No.7? Then you've got a bowling option plus some runs, and you've got [Robin] Peterson and [Vernon] Philander to contribute. We need to come up with a plan of how we can be successful without Jacques.

Jacques is one of those guys who you may get in for a short period of time as a consultant. I'm sure he would love to help out guys with some of his ideas. Some of his thinking might be above what us mortals are used to implementing. Even when you used to hear him talk about his technique, you'd think, "I've never thought about it that deeply." A man who has played as much cricket as he has would have some great ideas about how people can improve.

He will move out of cricket quite easily. He is going to spend plenty of time on the golf course. He has always been a man who has enjoyed the luxuries of home and family and friends. Whatever he decides to do after that, he will do well. Jacques will find something to sink his teeth into.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • TommytuckerSaffa on December 30, 2013, 20:26 GMT

    The greatest Modern Day cricketer to ever be produced. If you are unsure, please check the stats.

  • on December 30, 2013, 19:24 GMT

    Kallis was the backbone, the cog in the wheel without which everything would fall apart. I think recently, there was a game Kallis missed due to injury, and lo and behold! a thousand changes just to maintain the balance of the team. Those criticizing King Kallis for being too slow, boring or plain unspectacular would probably also have Shahid Afridi batting for their lives rather than Misbah-ul-Haq. A propos de "King Kallis", I propose this become a title for people who excel in everything cricket, Kallis should get the title King Kallis I. The search is on for King Kallis II ...

  • on December 30, 2013, 17:10 GMT

    He has been the true gentleman and a classy cricketer. who graced the game its been honor to watch the great all rounder play. it doesn't matter he has done his job stats are great nothing less then any of greatest brian lara or sachin and ricky.Jacques didn't get much spot light as these greats but he has been my favorite because of his calm attitude and all round ability in all departments of game. You will be missed Jacques.........Best of luck.

  • StaalBurgher on December 30, 2013, 14:19 GMT

    The greatest cricketer that has ever played the game.

  • on December 30, 2013, 12:39 GMT

    If Kallis had to play ± 2 more years of test cricket, in my opinion he would have surpassed Tendulka, if you look at his batting average and he would have bagged more than 300 wickets. Salute to the underrated legend. #greatest batsman #greatest allrounder

  • alidaas on December 30, 2013, 10:16 GMT

    I don't know why KALLIS is retiring only at a tender age? Look at other batsmen who played until their 40s, and even look at MIBAH, he never thinks to retire from Test or ODI cricket. The answer to this is a real character and an extremely God gifted perso and that is only KALLIS as we all know.

    I don't want to see KALLIS retiring from Test Cricket, he could have continued to play 2 more years and all records would have been in KALLIS's names. Cricket will never be the same without him. SA will never be able to find such a complete allrounder everrrr.... Miss you KALLIS

  • liamhsiemllac on December 30, 2013, 8:07 GMT

    In the early days I never warmed to the man, however I remember clearly the moment I was not only won over, but held him in such high esteem I consider it to be a slight to refer to him by his surname alone - he wasn't even playing that day.

    It was an ODI, he was injured and AB had been moved up the order and scored a match winning ton. In the post-match interview AB described the great honour it was to be moved up, and referred to him as Mr Kallis. Not Jacque or Kallis, but Mr Kallis. Everything about the man I struggled to 'warm' to became very clear - and I've not been able to speak of him as anyone but Mr Kallis since.

    I think this article in its way says something very similar - Mr Kallis managed to inspire a raise in the games average-wise, with his fellow players - much in the way Amla inspired a raise in Mr Kallis' game SR-wise. The process works both ways. Even bowling-wise, he had the skill to discover the best length to operate at quicker than most.

    A misunderstood legend

  • zxaar on December 30, 2013, 7:28 GMT

    @ Dazzling_Devil " Kallis is second only to Adam Gilchrist in maximum sixes in Test career. Boring? Really?" ------------------------ Wrong format. In ODIs his SR is 72. If only Kallis understood that it is the ODIs where SR matters and number of sixes matters. Not to forget his 115 with SR of 37 that were filled with lots of sixes and was really not a boring knock.

  • diri on December 30, 2013, 7:12 GMT

    King Kallis ...The king of kings...The most valuable player the world has ever seen or will see. There will never be another like him again. India can think Sachin was the greatest but the rest of the world knows that Kallis was better and more valuable. If my life depended on it I would rather have kallis at the crease instead of Sachin....Thank you KING Kallis. We will miss you

  • Dielo on December 30, 2013, 5:22 GMT

    Watched highlights of Day 4 of the Durban test yesterday and was shocked to see a largely empty stadium especially in the morning when fans knew Kallis was closing in on hundred number 45. Shame on Durban cricket fans for not showing up in large numbers to support the great man in his last outing! But I guess that lends credence to the theory that Kallis was largely a hard-working and silent accumulator while not big on being an entertainer.

  • TommytuckerSaffa on December 30, 2013, 20:26 GMT

    The greatest Modern Day cricketer to ever be produced. If you are unsure, please check the stats.

  • on December 30, 2013, 19:24 GMT

    Kallis was the backbone, the cog in the wheel without which everything would fall apart. I think recently, there was a game Kallis missed due to injury, and lo and behold! a thousand changes just to maintain the balance of the team. Those criticizing King Kallis for being too slow, boring or plain unspectacular would probably also have Shahid Afridi batting for their lives rather than Misbah-ul-Haq. A propos de "King Kallis", I propose this become a title for people who excel in everything cricket, Kallis should get the title King Kallis I. The search is on for King Kallis II ...

  • on December 30, 2013, 17:10 GMT

    He has been the true gentleman and a classy cricketer. who graced the game its been honor to watch the great all rounder play. it doesn't matter he has done his job stats are great nothing less then any of greatest brian lara or sachin and ricky.Jacques didn't get much spot light as these greats but he has been my favorite because of his calm attitude and all round ability in all departments of game. You will be missed Jacques.........Best of luck.

  • StaalBurgher on December 30, 2013, 14:19 GMT

    The greatest cricketer that has ever played the game.

  • on December 30, 2013, 12:39 GMT

    If Kallis had to play ± 2 more years of test cricket, in my opinion he would have surpassed Tendulka, if you look at his batting average and he would have bagged more than 300 wickets. Salute to the underrated legend. #greatest batsman #greatest allrounder

  • alidaas on December 30, 2013, 10:16 GMT

    I don't know why KALLIS is retiring only at a tender age? Look at other batsmen who played until their 40s, and even look at MIBAH, he never thinks to retire from Test or ODI cricket. The answer to this is a real character and an extremely God gifted perso and that is only KALLIS as we all know.

    I don't want to see KALLIS retiring from Test Cricket, he could have continued to play 2 more years and all records would have been in KALLIS's names. Cricket will never be the same without him. SA will never be able to find such a complete allrounder everrrr.... Miss you KALLIS

  • liamhsiemllac on December 30, 2013, 8:07 GMT

    In the early days I never warmed to the man, however I remember clearly the moment I was not only won over, but held him in such high esteem I consider it to be a slight to refer to him by his surname alone - he wasn't even playing that day.

    It was an ODI, he was injured and AB had been moved up the order and scored a match winning ton. In the post-match interview AB described the great honour it was to be moved up, and referred to him as Mr Kallis. Not Jacque or Kallis, but Mr Kallis. Everything about the man I struggled to 'warm' to became very clear - and I've not been able to speak of him as anyone but Mr Kallis since.

    I think this article in its way says something very similar - Mr Kallis managed to inspire a raise in the games average-wise, with his fellow players - much in the way Amla inspired a raise in Mr Kallis' game SR-wise. The process works both ways. Even bowling-wise, he had the skill to discover the best length to operate at quicker than most.

    A misunderstood legend

  • zxaar on December 30, 2013, 7:28 GMT

    @ Dazzling_Devil " Kallis is second only to Adam Gilchrist in maximum sixes in Test career. Boring? Really?" ------------------------ Wrong format. In ODIs his SR is 72. If only Kallis understood that it is the ODIs where SR matters and number of sixes matters. Not to forget his 115 with SR of 37 that were filled with lots of sixes and was really not a boring knock.

  • diri on December 30, 2013, 7:12 GMT

    King Kallis ...The king of kings...The most valuable player the world has ever seen or will see. There will never be another like him again. India can think Sachin was the greatest but the rest of the world knows that Kallis was better and more valuable. If my life depended on it I would rather have kallis at the crease instead of Sachin....Thank you KING Kallis. We will miss you

  • Dielo on December 30, 2013, 5:22 GMT

    Watched highlights of Day 4 of the Durban test yesterday and was shocked to see a largely empty stadium especially in the morning when fans knew Kallis was closing in on hundred number 45. Shame on Durban cricket fans for not showing up in large numbers to support the great man in his last outing! But I guess that lends credence to the theory that Kallis was largely a hard-working and silent accumulator while not big on being an entertainer.

  • on December 30, 2013, 3:20 GMT

    Sachin Tendulkar, a best bastman; Glenn Macgrath, a best bowler, Jacques King Kallis, most valuable player in any format of the game. A true allrounder. Willed be missed give time. Thank you Kallis for all the things....

  • on December 30, 2013, 1:12 GMT

    The fact that Tendulkar is mentioned every time Bradman, Lara, Ponting, Viv, Kallis or Dravid are discussed speaks volumes about Sachin's achievements in cricket.

    Like him or hate him (is it even possible? the most humblest sportsman I've ever seen!) but you simply can not ignore him. A true icon of the sport :)

  • on December 29, 2013, 19:02 GMT

    I love jacque very much,I wish he could play for another 2years which he will have time to have the most centuries in test cricket.

  • on December 29, 2013, 19:00 GMT

    There can be no comparison between Sachin and Kallis....as Kallis did not have to face Donald, Shaun Pollock, Lance Klusener and Imran Khan... neverthless he has been a GR8 allrounder in league with only Sobers, who could bowl very good spin as well as Seam!

  • Paracha420 on December 29, 2013, 18:04 GMT

    Master Kallis "The Sober's of our generation" All round cricket will never be the same again without you good luck gr8 man!!!Cricket will miss u

  • on December 29, 2013, 18:03 GMT

    the most complete cricketer ever witnessed by history. his class is above tendulkar, dravid and whoever played for this game. he is true legend.if he keeps playing on, tendulkar is no way near him.look at his records in every category whether it batting, bowling or catches. " THE GREATEST OF THE GREATS".

  • TommytuckerSaffa on December 29, 2013, 18:01 GMT

    He needs to play against Australia so he can finish in Newlands and beat Ricky Pontings record. Then its only him and Sachin at the top.

  • on December 29, 2013, 17:35 GMT

    What a player, sometimes frustrated me as a supporter but he knew exactly what he was doing on the field.

  • immi2711 on December 29, 2013, 16:18 GMT

    Well I would not say Jacques was better than Dravid...but definitely better than Sachin, as far what it meant when he walked in to bat for the team. I remember years ago, we(Pakistan) had always him in our head, we just needed get past Jacques to win the game...Similarly with Dravid, we just have to get Dravid's wicket, and we have a chance to win the match....So yes, I would compare him to Dravid, he had the quiet gentlemanly approach like Dravid, although they meant business.

    But it was never his batting that impressed me, it was his bowling. He would come in and break partnerships. It seemed he knew what to do to get the batter out, when everyone else failed.....

  • Desihungama on December 29, 2013, 15:31 GMT

    Gary Sobers, Imran Khan and Jaque Kallies completes the podium for all time All-Rounders.

  • TheTrueView on December 29, 2013, 14:29 GMT

    Kallis is better than Dravid, Sachin, Pointing or Lara. He has Tendulkar's good nature and hunger, Dravid's reliability, Ponting's and Lara's knack of playing match wining innings. Simply by sight and statistics it is plain as the nose on one's face that he did the job of a Tendulkar / DRAVID + Zaheer or a Pointing + Gillespie. Lara received more attention because he was the only outstanding / good player of his team. Better to have retired now like Poniting / Dravid than like Tendulkar playing for personal records and keeping young blood out of the team. Almost, all noticed his steady decline in recent years. It is only in India where such a thing is even possible. You can compare his statistics from 2010 and see it for yourself. If a Kallis or a Ponting went on like this in the last 3 years of their career, it would have not been in their countries but in a parallel universe. Kallis was The Cricketer of his era, take him for all he is, we shall not see his likes again.

  • on December 29, 2013, 14:05 GMT

    Very nice written. Jacques Kallis was probably one of the greatest players cricket has ever seen. Overshadowed by the likes of Tendulkar, Ponting and Lara (Tendulkar, being the media proclaimed demi-god, overshadows everyone else), he quietly went about his game. I would even say the he was a better cricketer than all three names mentioned above. Neither of Tendulkar, Ponting and Lara ever had to worry about bowling. 290 wickets in tests is as good as putting an effort for scoring another 5-7 thousand runs. Would say his contribution as a player was far more than anyone in his times.

  • on December 29, 2013, 13:57 GMT

    Respect for Kallis.So gentle and hardworking.

  • on December 29, 2013, 13:15 GMT

    kallis has been fun to watch. those who criticize him must learn first. I believe he has 36 less test matches then sachin. if he keeps playing he can certainly reach that milestone. The guy is a legend. the best all rounder of all time.

  • on December 29, 2013, 13:10 GMT

    Technically Kallis was far better than Tendulkar and Ponting. To me standing of batting legends in the last 30 years should be 1- Lara 2- Dravid 3- Kallis & No 3 was a brilliant bowler too. So, one could easily assess his weight as a cricketer. Time to thank him for his contributions for the game. Goodbye

  • Arrow011 on December 29, 2013, 12:03 GMT

    @ SL Slider - You are spot on, I would not even spend a cent to watch the boring player of the century. I always enjoyed Mahela's class, in South Africa ABD is the best player. It was sheer boredom which made me switch off the TV when Kallis was scoring 115 today. Being a selfish player he would have known he was adrift of Dravid's 113 yesterday so he made 115 to be 1 up of the nearest target. He can never be compared with Sachin, Lara & Mahela. The best south african born batsman for me is always KP.

  • on December 29, 2013, 12:03 GMT

    Not entertaining? Really? Is that how a cricketer is judged? I prefer to remember all the games either won or saved on the back of Kallis. To remember Kallis quietly batting the opposition completely out of a game (and sometimes series). And if you want a good measure of greatness, ask the opposition players of his generation how happy they were to see the back of him. That will tell you everything.

  • MrPud on December 29, 2013, 11:50 GMT

    The sign of a true entertainer is to always leave the fans wanting more. He could have played against the Aussies. There's no Cummins to startle him this time.

  • Aura123 on December 29, 2013, 11:45 GMT

    Simply the Legend. We will miss you . Love from Pakistan

  • sadSajith on December 29, 2013, 11:38 GMT

    Ok..i had enough...there are some fans from a country which cant handle themselves when a player from some other country is appreciated...Kallis is not Imran Khan, Botham, Kapil Dev , Sobers or Sachin....Thank god he is just the one and only Kallis... For me he is the greatest all-rounder ever played but is anyone has different idea its ok keep it because different people have different ideas... But please when a player is appreciated don't try to spoil it just because he is from a different country or a different type of player... Don't try to compare legends in cricket...

  • Dielo on December 29, 2013, 11:34 GMT

    Why is Kallis quitting tests if he has so much left in the tank? The man could have comfortably surpassed Sachin for total Test runs if he had maintained his excellent fitness for another couple of years. If it is about going out on top, it's really selfish as I am of the Sachin mindset that one owes it to their country/team to keep giving their best until no longer possible. If he really can't keep playing two formats then he had to make way for a youngster in the ODI format and not the other way round. Just because he needs to win a World cup for his own ego than ensuring his country has the best squad in Australia for 2015. Really can't fathom why he has walked out on us when Tests are stull reeling from the retirement of greats like Sachin and Ponting. Maybe he sees Mitchell Johnson coming in the form of his life and doesnt want to look like a fool against him like the English batters... in which case its still all about him and not the team.

  • on December 29, 2013, 11:26 GMT

    "Jacque is the greatest cricketer of his era" which was stated by Ravi Shastri and I heartily agree. Over 13000 runs, 292 wickets, 200 catches and second most hundreds while not playing the majority of his cricket on the flat wickets of the sub continent unlike Dravid and Tendulkar.

    I can't believe people are saying Kallis is not entertaining! The ignorance of some of these comments I find amusing. I could watch his glorious cover drives all day long and not to mention that he has hit the most sixes in tests after Gilchrist.

  • Testcricketistop on December 29, 2013, 11:03 GMT

    For those who say Kallis never entertained.

    73 off 96 balls vs Australia in Capetown 2002 54 off 41 balls vs Australia in JHB 2011 162 of 260 ball vs England in Durban 2004 136 off 217 balls vs England in Pretoria in 2005 200 of 270 balls vs India in Pretoria in 2010 186 off 262 balls vs New Zealand in JHb in 2007 132 off 177 balls vs New Zealand in Pretoria in 2007 155 off 249 vs Pakistan in Karachi 2007 135 off 218 vs Pakistan in Dubai 2010 59 off 78 vs Ari lanka in Galle 2004 224 off 325 vs Sri Lanka Capetown 2012 130 off 190 vs West Indies in Capetown in 2004 130 off 199 vs West Indies in Pretoria in 2004

  • on December 29, 2013, 11:03 GMT

    What a nice article! I loved watching him bat in person yesterday! It was a dream coming true watching him bat the WHOLE day. What a treat! Now enough with the waterworks ! Love you king kallis!

  • on December 29, 2013, 10:58 GMT

    A car analogy - Sachin = a BMW, Ponting - a big American V8 Corvette, Kallis = Toyota Hilux (you cannot compare them)

  • Protears on December 29, 2013, 10:47 GMT

    Kallis is going out on top, he could easily play for another 2 seasons but has chosen the now to focus on specializing for the limited overs formats, this innings shows he is far from done as a test caliber player.

    All Time test 11: Bradman, Hutton, Headley, Richards, Kallis, Sobers, Imran Khan, Dev, Hadlee, Akram, Marshall.

  • on December 29, 2013, 10:21 GMT

    No doubt a great farewell article. well compiled by Pollock. I think the greatness of players can also be gauged by how well they are appreciated by people outside their home country. Think about a Messi, a Tendulkar, a Federer...and on that scale Kallis belongs comfortably in that league.

  • SLslider on December 29, 2013, 10:08 GMT

    @ MaruthuDelft I have to agree with you. I would anytime pay to watch Legends like Mahela and Sanga but will never pay to watch Kallis. I have always felt he has never had that impact on a single match. Never won a major trophy. Yes he could be considered as one of the greats in Test matches but he doesn't fulfill the requirements of ODI cricket. He has two skills at his disposal still has never been man of the series of any major tournament. His ODI runs have not been important. Even his century today was a bit selfish. S/R of only 36 against Indian bowling is unacceptable.

  • philvic on December 29, 2013, 9:52 GMT

    Why is it necessary to endlessly compare players to work out who is greatest. Everything suffers by comparison. Kallis is one of the greats of world cricket and his contributions to SA cricket have been unrivaled. THANK YOU JACQUES

  • on December 29, 2013, 9:39 GMT

    who says kallis was not an entertainer...yes hez not an entertainer for his opposition...the real masterclass. the most dependable

  • iceaxe on December 29, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    Great article. It has been a great era. Will miss you Kallis.

  • The-love on December 29, 2013, 8:16 GMT

    As many of you are saying,Kallis is not an entertainer.But being an Indian,any day I will prefer boring Kallis than entertaining sehwag,afridi or any other dasher.

  • on December 29, 2013, 7:49 GMT

    Mr Cricket indeed. Great article by a great player about arguably the greatest player. Hope we can fill the gap, but doubt it. This could be the biggest hole ever left by a player. Hope he makes it to the World Cup. JK you are a legend

  • Gupta.Ankur on December 29, 2013, 7:21 GMT

    It was really amusing to hear the commentary in the ongoing test where the SA commentators regularly comparing Kallis with sobers and other great all-rounders.

    As i have said before, that even though kallis has great numbers but he hasn't had the same impact as Imran Khan, Botham, Kapil Dev , Sobers and the greatest ever SRT had one their country's cricket and world cricket.

    If numbers were anything then Jayawardene and Co would be better than Bradman.

  • sejan_ruet on December 29, 2013, 6:57 GMT

    "Kallis"- made cricket like it is an effortless game. He was always overlooked by the media hype, may be because he'd never be flamboyant, may be SA supporters are not media frenzy, or simply may be he'd prefer to do his job quitely. I can't put him alongside Lara, Ponting, Dravid or as I am audacious enough, even with Sachin; because none of the latter guyz can compete with him. All of them might have more runs than he has, but can they outplay his all round ability, I can show similar logics to most of the "greats", but put simply, I believe Kallis is a player of different Genre, it's like comparing Classical music to Rock and though am audacious, I am not fool. I believe if Kallis was born in sub-continent,he'd be nothing less than a "god", but unfortunately(!) he is not. Perhaps, he is enjoying what he has been for his country and even for cricket. Though I feel heartache as he is retiring, but I'll miss the man while see SA playing. Hats off to the KING, you'll be badly missed.

  • on December 29, 2013, 5:40 GMT

    Jacques does not get the credit from media as he deserved it, He was a Golden war horse for SA for 15 - 18 years. A special batsmen who crossed 13k+ runs in tests.If you compare the situation runs kallis got under pressure with brain,sachin,ricky kallis stands out. His chasing record is very good. Kallis was probably the top 10 allrounders world has ever got. And probably top 20 batsman in world. The workload of kallis is amazing

  • Dazzling_Devil on December 29, 2013, 5:08 GMT

    @MaruthuDelft Kallis is second only to Adam Gilchrist in maximum sixes in Test career. Boring? Really?

  • on December 29, 2013, 4:19 GMT

    We all know what Kallis was & what Kallis is.He was very much like dravid when it comes to batting. Surrounded by greats like hudson, kirsten, cullinan, chronje, de villiers, smith & now Amla. He never had the luxury of being flamboyant but he silently did his job. He had even open bowling for SA, so what else u want from a player. In bowling he had Donald, macmillan, fanie de velliers, pollock, steyn, philander, morkel but kallis was kallis & will remain the best all rounder ever produced. Sorry i havent seen sobers, but i have seen little bit of kapil, botham & imran & i will not put kallis among them because they all were ruthless & stars with huge fan following while kallis as pollock said just did his job.

  • MaruthuDelft on December 29, 2013, 3:48 GMT

    Kallis is so boring. He is one of the most difficult to dislodge once settled like Gavaskar and Boycott; but just about that. However his bowling ability added to that makes him a rare cricketer. But still he doesn't tick the important box; he doesn't entertain.

  • jimbond on December 29, 2013, 2:37 GMT

    As an allrounder, I thought Shaun Pollock was right up there with Kallis. Had either of them played for an allrounder-starved country like India or Australia or England, they would have been even more sought after. Pollock's batting was good enough for no. 6 or no. 7, but he always batted lower- which did not allow his batting to develop fully. Even in SA which has several allrounders in the pipeline, these two were among the top. I am sure that given opportunities, others like Mclaren, Philander, Duminy would be able to play this role effectively in the days to come.

  • Robster1 on December 29, 2013, 2:09 GMT

    Good article indeed - most refreshing to read some personal insights about Kallis. And Shaun, could you please have a word with the great man and ask him to delay his too early test retirement until after the Australian series. A retirement at Newlands would be so much more appropriate and he could thump the Aussies one more time.

  • hayagriva on December 29, 2013, 1:11 GMT

    I am an Indian, and would hate Jacques Kallis every time he played against India. Mainly because I believed deeply that he had such amazing ability to destroy both our bowling and batting - which he did on many occasions.

    But now that I hear of his retirement I kind of feel sad for the game will definitely loose a jewel of a cricketer who could do so many amazing things with both bat and ball. There is no doubt that he is the best all-rounder of his generation...and perhaps among the top two or three of all time. Good luck with your life Jacques.

  • Pete_AU on December 28, 2013, 23:56 GMT

    Easily the best cricketer of the current era. An excellent batsman with enormous weight of runs, and nearly 300 test wickets (he always looked dangerous with the ball here in Australia). Statistics don't lie.

    I would have liked to see him make it to 300 test wickets because I think he really deserves it, but can't see him taking 8fer in the second dig here.

    As for 'best ever', I believe pretty firmly in not comparing across eras.

  • Diaz54 on December 28, 2013, 22:47 GMT

    I wish Kallis was not retiring. He has so. Inch to offer.SA should stop him bowling and just bat. I wish they could persuade him to continue!!

  • on December 28, 2013, 22:13 GMT

    Fantastic article. Shows the respect other legends of the game have for this man, and it's well-deserved. Kallis has the most man-of-the-match performances for South Africa in both Test and ODI cricket, and for good reason: when everyone else crumbled, Kallis had the skill and temperament to prop the entire team up. A true colossus who will be sorely missed. It's going to be tough to say goodbye to my Test idol - I'm really going to miss those elbow-high cover drives.

  • saifeedon on December 28, 2013, 22:06 GMT

    Amazingly said by shaun pollock! Take a bow...hatss off to kallis,legend that he is!who cares if he could not get the same hype as pointing lara or tendulkar,world knows what he has done for sa and his records r as good as the others Cheers

  • SpartaArmy on December 28, 2013, 21:45 GMT

    If I may say, It's not just two guys, it has to be an all-time great batsman and a good bowler. Regarding fame, It's not just about opening up to media, he is neither as flamboyant as Lara, Ponting when it comes to the way they single handedly won games for their countries, and nor a child prodigy as Sachin. When it comes to batting, I wish he could have pushed on more often for his team rather than struck in his own bubble, like he did today after Dvlrs dismissal; nevertheless he is a true GIANT in the game.

  • TommytuckerSaffa on December 28, 2013, 19:59 GMT

    Great article by Pollock. Kallis, the worlds Greatest Cricketer. We will never in my lifetime get another player like you playing for SA.

  • mvkk on December 28, 2013, 18:57 GMT

    loved it...I don't think I have seen a team mate talk about or write an article about their mate this way...KingKallis is truly Mr.Cricket, No fuss on or off the field. A privilege for his captains, when somebody like Jacques is in the team and is ready to take the criticism in stride and improve all the time. Criticism towards his strikerate is not right, as for the most he played he had to build the innings and put lot of value on his wicket. Once he realized that he doesn't have to do that his strike rate has definitely improved, he is playing with lot more freedom in the last few years and his contribution to the development of the current set of players like AB is amazing. Definitely will be missed more than anybody

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  • mvkk on December 28, 2013, 18:57 GMT

    loved it...I don't think I have seen a team mate talk about or write an article about their mate this way...KingKallis is truly Mr.Cricket, No fuss on or off the field. A privilege for his captains, when somebody like Jacques is in the team and is ready to take the criticism in stride and improve all the time. Criticism towards his strikerate is not right, as for the most he played he had to build the innings and put lot of value on his wicket. Once he realized that he doesn't have to do that his strike rate has definitely improved, he is playing with lot more freedom in the last few years and his contribution to the development of the current set of players like AB is amazing. Definitely will be missed more than anybody

  • TommytuckerSaffa on December 28, 2013, 19:59 GMT

    Great article by Pollock. Kallis, the worlds Greatest Cricketer. We will never in my lifetime get another player like you playing for SA.

  • SpartaArmy on December 28, 2013, 21:45 GMT

    If I may say, It's not just two guys, it has to be an all-time great batsman and a good bowler. Regarding fame, It's not just about opening up to media, he is neither as flamboyant as Lara, Ponting when it comes to the way they single handedly won games for their countries, and nor a child prodigy as Sachin. When it comes to batting, I wish he could have pushed on more often for his team rather than struck in his own bubble, like he did today after Dvlrs dismissal; nevertheless he is a true GIANT in the game.

  • saifeedon on December 28, 2013, 22:06 GMT

    Amazingly said by shaun pollock! Take a bow...hatss off to kallis,legend that he is!who cares if he could not get the same hype as pointing lara or tendulkar,world knows what he has done for sa and his records r as good as the others Cheers

  • on December 28, 2013, 22:13 GMT

    Fantastic article. Shows the respect other legends of the game have for this man, and it's well-deserved. Kallis has the most man-of-the-match performances for South Africa in both Test and ODI cricket, and for good reason: when everyone else crumbled, Kallis had the skill and temperament to prop the entire team up. A true colossus who will be sorely missed. It's going to be tough to say goodbye to my Test idol - I'm really going to miss those elbow-high cover drives.

  • Diaz54 on December 28, 2013, 22:47 GMT

    I wish Kallis was not retiring. He has so. Inch to offer.SA should stop him bowling and just bat. I wish they could persuade him to continue!!

  • Pete_AU on December 28, 2013, 23:56 GMT

    Easily the best cricketer of the current era. An excellent batsman with enormous weight of runs, and nearly 300 test wickets (he always looked dangerous with the ball here in Australia). Statistics don't lie.

    I would have liked to see him make it to 300 test wickets because I think he really deserves it, but can't see him taking 8fer in the second dig here.

    As for 'best ever', I believe pretty firmly in not comparing across eras.

  • hayagriva on December 29, 2013, 1:11 GMT

    I am an Indian, and would hate Jacques Kallis every time he played against India. Mainly because I believed deeply that he had such amazing ability to destroy both our bowling and batting - which he did on many occasions.

    But now that I hear of his retirement I kind of feel sad for the game will definitely loose a jewel of a cricketer who could do so many amazing things with both bat and ball. There is no doubt that he is the best all-rounder of his generation...and perhaps among the top two or three of all time. Good luck with your life Jacques.

  • Robster1 on December 29, 2013, 2:09 GMT

    Good article indeed - most refreshing to read some personal insights about Kallis. And Shaun, could you please have a word with the great man and ask him to delay his too early test retirement until after the Australian series. A retirement at Newlands would be so much more appropriate and he could thump the Aussies one more time.

  • jimbond on December 29, 2013, 2:37 GMT

    As an allrounder, I thought Shaun Pollock was right up there with Kallis. Had either of them played for an allrounder-starved country like India or Australia or England, they would have been even more sought after. Pollock's batting was good enough for no. 6 or no. 7, but he always batted lower- which did not allow his batting to develop fully. Even in SA which has several allrounders in the pipeline, these two were among the top. I am sure that given opportunities, others like Mclaren, Philander, Duminy would be able to play this role effectively in the days to come.