Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

South Africa: The Kallis Conundrum

analysis

As King Kallis packs up his mountain of test runs, wickets and catches, the selectors will have a "transformation-sized" headache ahead of them as they attempt to figure the new cake mix combination needed to keep the Proteas at the pinnacle of test match cricket.

We all knew this day was coming, and yet like the proverbial ostrich head in the sand, we never really wanted to accept that it would happen at all, let alone this soon.

His consistently great performances were such that we expected him to carry on performing into perpetuity.

In Jaques Henry Kallis' final soiree in the test arena, he's once again shown to be the cement in the foundation of the Proteas' innings, and by scoring a century achieved a feat that other cricketing greats, Bradman, Sobers, Tendulkar or Ponting could not.

So how exactly does one go about replacing the greatest cricketer this country has ever produced?

Since his debut back in 1995, the Proteas have been the recipients of a 2-for-1 special every time he's walked out in test match whites. With a batting average higher than that of Sachin Tendulkar's and a bowling average lower than that of...

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