Jacques Kallis has recently been the recipient of ringing praise from none other than up and coming Australian all rounder Daniel Christian.
Christian described Kallis as ‘the stand out all rounder in the world’, as well as arguing that Kallis has a case to be regarded the best all rounder the game has ever seen. This is an entirely fair point, as Kallis has scored a mountain of runs in both Test matches and One Day Internationals for his native South Africa, as well as taking over 250 wickets in Test matches.
Some regard Kallis as an underrated bowler, with his pace tending to surprise batsman, as well as the bounce he manages to generate as well. Christian does right to try and model his game on Kallis, with Kallis’s ability to affect the outcome of a game being so strong, his ex-coach once said having Kallis on the field of play was like having 12 men on the pitch.
At the tender age of 36, Kallis’s future in the game is unlikely to last more than a few more years at the most, but the fact that his body has been able to survive the rigours of both batting and seam bowling in the modern game is something of a phenomenon, with similar all-rounders such as Andrew Flintoff and Shane Watson both regularly carrying injuries, with Flintoff having to retire at the ridiculous age of 31, and Watson is likely facing a future career where he will not bowl.
Kallis will also retire as a man who will be consigned to history as a legend of the game, with the only prize excluding him being the World Cup in both 50 over and T20 cricket, both of which are sure to be a major aim for him as he finishes his career.