De Kock’s Final ODI Campaign
South African opener, Quinton de Kock, had previously announced that his participation in the tournament in India would mark his final appearances in One Day Internationals (ODIs) for the Proteas. His illustrious ODI career concluded at the semi-final stage, following an exceptional individual performance throughout the tournament.
De Kock’s Legacy
Despite the semi-final loss to Australia, South Africa’s captain, Temba Bavuma, praised de Kock’s contribution to the team. “While he might have wished for a different ending, he’ll cherish the innings and the team spirit we displayed,” said Bavuma. “As teammates, we’ve relished playing alongside him over the years. He will be remembered as one of the game’s legends in South Africa.”
Impressive Career Statistics
De Kock’s performance in the tournament was remarkable, scoring 594 runs in ten innings at an average of 59.40. Only Virat Kohli managed to score more runs than de Kock. These impressive numbers contribute to de Kock’s outstanding career statistics. In his 155 ODIs, the left-handed batsman scored 6770 runs at an average of 45.74 and a strike rate of 96.64, setting a high bar for South Africa with his 21 centuries.
Final ODI Performance
Unfortunately, de Kock’s final ODI performance was not his best. A formidable spell of new-ball bowling from Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc put pressure on the South African team, particularly after Bavuma was dismissed for a duck. De Kock’s struggle ended abruptly when he was caught off Hazlewood, ending his ODI career with a 14-ball three.
Australian fast bowler, Mitchell Starc, acknowledged the importance of dismissing de Kock early in the match. “Our strategy of building up dot balls led to Quinton’s dismissal. His early exit allowed us to face their middle order sooner, which was crucial to our victory,” Starc explained.
De Kock’s Future in T20
Despite his retirement from ODIs, de Kock’s cricket career is far from over. With the T20 World Cup slated for 2024, de Kock, who is already South Africa’s record scorer in the shorter format, could still have a crowning moment in his career. His record of 2277 runs in 79 innings at 32.52 and 137.33 suggests that he remains one of the most influential batters in international cricket.