Vernon Philander announces international retirement after England Tests

South Africa all-rounder Vernon Philander has called time on his 12-year long international cricket career. The upcoming 4-Test series against England at home will be his last stint as a Proteas international. The 34-year-old has played 97 matches for South Africa across formats so far.

Having made his ODI debut in 2007, Philander went on to become a promising bowling all-rounder for South Africa but ended up playing only 30 ODIs. His success was far more evident in the longer format, where he became a lethal operator with his ability to swing the ball both ways. In only seven matches, Philander became the joint second-fastest bowler in the world to claim 50 Test wickets. He was also one of the quickest to cross the 100-wicket mark in whites. Some of Philander’s famous exploits include a stunning five-wicket haul in the 2011 Cape Town Test where Australia crumbled for a paltry 47.

A more than handy batsman, Philander raked up as many as eight fifty-plus scores in Test cricket and finished with an average of 24.16. He was part of the South African side that was ranked No.1 in Tests and also once occupied the top spot in the bowlers’ rankings.

“Appropriate time to conclude journey”

“I would like to hereby announce that I will be retiring from international cricket at the conclusion of the Test series against England,” Philander said.

“It has been an honour and privilege to have played alongside the very best in the game as well as being part of the best Test team for a number of years. I feel that it is an appropriate time to conclude what has been an amazing journey.”

Recently appointed Director of Cricket South Africa and fellow teammate Graeme Smith was all praise for Philander, who played his first Test under Smith as captain.

“Vernon has been an outstanding performer in the time that he has represented his country, especially in the Test format,” Smith said. “He has made a huge impact for the Proteas and has been at the frontline with the ball for most of his time in the set-up. He has given his best in every appearance and I think that how he has turned himself into an all-rounder has been particularly pleasing to watch.”

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