Quinton de Kock is a unique cricketer. He is a talented stroke-playing batsman and wicketkeeper, but he is also a maverick who enjoys nothing more than his time away from the game by going fishing and playing golf. At the age of 30, he has already served his time in the international arena and is now looking to wind down his career.
“I’ve played a lot of cricket already,” he says. De Kock retired from Test cricket in 2022, and the Cricket World Cup will be his last ODI tournament. He will remain available for T20Is, but only when they don’t clash with more lucrative franchise opportunities. Quinton de Kock is expected to miss a T20 series against India in December because he has signed a contract to play in Australia’s Big Bash League.
Cricket South Africa has seemingly bowed to the reality that they will have to be flexible if they want star players to be available for major tournaments. De Kock made his first-class debut at the age of 17 and appeared for South Africa in a T20I just four days after his 20th birthday. He has always done things his own way, and is known for his fearless approach to batting.
He had almost immediate success at every level, and reeled off three successive ODI centuries against India before he turned 21. Going into the World Cup, he has taken his tally of ODI hundreds to 17, opening the batting and invariably scoring at a rapid rate. He has also scored six Test centuries and one in a T20I.
De Kock missed a match in the T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates in 2021 when he refused to obey a last-minute edict by CSA to “take the knee” in sympathy with the Black Lives Matter movement. He has always been outspoken about his beliefs, and is not afraid to stand up for what he thinks in. He never looked entirely comfortable in the leadership role and freely admits, “I don’t mind captaining but I was pretty happy to hand it over. It’s not really in my character.”
De Kock is known for his relaxed approach to cricket. He doesn’t study potential opponents or think about cricket when he’s away from the game. He lives in Knysna, a popular tourist town on a large lagoon some five hours drive from Cape Town, where cricket can easily be forgotten.
Quinton de Kock will be retiring from ODI cricket after the world cup in India and says once he’s quit T20s too, doesn’t have plans to remain involved with the game.https://t.co/AKdLn8Xik0
— News18 CricketNext (@cricketnext) September 26, 2023
“I like golf, fishing, spending time with my family,” he says. “I don’t touch a bat when I am at home. We play so much cricket that it’s like riding a bicycle. A couple of nets when I join up with the team and I’m ready to play.”
One of his regular golfing partners is legendary former South Africa batsman Barry Richards.
“We see each other almost every day because we live in the same complex.” Do they talk about cricket? “Not really. We might talk a bit about it but he’s like me, we talk mainly about other things. I’ll give the World Cup my best shot. I would like to tick off an ICC (International Cricket Council) event,” he says.
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After that he might play T20 cricket for a maximum of five or six years before he walks away from the sport. “I don’t see myself being involved in the game in any way when I stop playing. I want a life after cricket.”
Quinton de Kock is a truly unique cricketer. He is a talented player, but he is also a maverick who enjoys life to the fullest. He is a role model for many young players, and his story is an inspiration to us all.