Hashim Amla steps down as Proteas captain

Hashim Amla said on Wednesday he was stepping aside as South Africa’s test captain with immediate effect, a day after a double century rescued his country from possible defeat in the second test against England.

The 32-year-old made the surprise announcement just minutes after the test at Newlands ended in draw and after Amla had led a fight back to haul his team from a precarious position.

AB de Villiers will take over as captain for the last two tests against England.

“Naturally this decision is not an easy one but the more I think about it the more I believe I can be of greater value to the Proteas as a fully focused batsman and senior player at this time or rebuilding our team,” Amla told reporters.

“I will continue to give my all to the team.”

Amla said he had been considering quitting over the last fortnight, even before the start of the series against England and the loss of the first test by 241 runs in Durban last week.

“It’s a bit of relief,” he said.

Amla captained South Africa for 14 tests with four wins, six draws and four defeats. South Africa, despite being the top-ranked test nation, have not won in their last eight tests sketching back to more than a year and Amla’s form has suffered.

He scored 251 test runs in 2015 but seemed to have got right the balance of making runs and captaining the team with a double century on Tuesday as his stoical performance rescued his side from the possibility of going 2-0 down in the series.

“We respect Hashim’s decision and the manner in which he thought about it and then communicated with me. He still has a huge role to play in shaping the success of our team without the need for a leadership title. He is just that type of a person and we are very fortunate to have him in our stable,” Cricket South Africa chief executive officer Haroon Lorgat said.

South Africa lost the first test against England last week by 241 runs and play the next two in Johannesburg and Pretoria. The third test at the Wanderers starts on Jan. 14.

“It’s a bit of a shock. I haven’t got anything to say,” England captain Alastair Cook said reacting to the news. – Reuters

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories


Subscribers only

ANC’s rotten apples on the chopping block

Now that the NEC has finalised its step-aside guidelines for those facing corruption charges, a swathe of officials will struggle to cling to their positions

The race elephant lurking in the DA’s ‘laboratory’

Tony Leon’s comments calling Mmusi Maimane an ‘experiment’ have lifted the lid on what disgruntled black leaders describe as insidious racism and a refusal to hold racists to account

More top stories

More ethnically diverse bone marrow donors needed to save lives

The myth that regenerative stem cells are body parts has led to donor reluctance

Khaya Sithole: The real weapons of mass destruction

Ratings agencies and derivatives caused the housing bubble, but where does the next financial crisis lurk?

Analysts expecting another attack ‘in the next few months’ in...

The extremist insurgency in Mozambique has been an ongoing threat since 2017. SADC needs to act now, say analysts

SIU probes how master of the high court fleeces the...

While the SIU delves into dozens of allegations of fraud, corruption and misconduct against officials at the master of the high court, many families have been left destitute after the death of their loved ones.

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…