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Dane van Niekerk to retire from international cricket

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Last updated on 11 Mar 2023 | 01:04 PM
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Dane van Niekerk to retire from international cricket

Her decision comes a month and a half after she was left out of the 2023 T20 World Cup squad

Former South African captain Dane van Niekerk is set to announce her retirement from international cricket, ESPNcricinfo reported on Saturday (March 11). 

The 29-year-old's decision comes a month and a half after she was left out of the 2023 T20 World Cup squad at home on fitness grounds. Van Niekerk hasn't played for South Africa since September 2021.

"You have to accept that some chapter in our lives have to close without closures. There is no point in trying to fix what's already broken," van Niekerk posted on her Instagram account.

The last year and a half have been tough for van Niekerk as the South African all-rounder struggled with numerous injuries that derailed her involvement with the national side.

While she regained her fitness and recovered from the ankle injury that ruled her out of the ODI World Cup in New Zealand in 2022, van Niekerk fell short by 18 seconds in the two-kilometer test by Cricket South Africa that denied her a chance to feature in the T20 World Cup last month. 

In her absence, South Africa were led by Sune Luus and made it through to the final for the first time in the history of their cricket - both men's and women's. They eventually lost to Australia in the grand finale in Cape Town.

After Delhi Capitals defeated Gujarat Giants on Saturday, Marizanne Kapp, van Niekerk's wife, said: "Sometimes it feels like I am the one who's retiring, just so heartbreaking. We've grown up in this South Africa team. It was difficult to hear her decision. But she seems in a better place mentally now, and that's what matters." 

Van Niekerk, the spin-bowling all-rounder, featured in 107 ODIs, 86 T20Is and a solitary Test, scoring over 4000 runs across her 14-year international career. The legspinner also claimed 204 wickets across three formats.

Van Niekerk is currently in India for the inaugural edition of the Women's Premier League. The all-rounder is part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore set-up but is yet to play a game despite the franchise have lost all of their four encounters.

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