SYDNEY: Former South Africa international and Hobart Hurricanes spinner Johan Botha has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket effective immediately. Botha, 36, made the surprise announcement following Hobart’s loss to the Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash League (BBL) at the SCG on Wednesday night. Botha cited wear and tear on his body and sheer physical fatigue behind his sudden retirement. “It was tough to make the decision,” he said on Thursday. “You never want it to end really, but it’s got to come to an end somewhere. The thinking was, the gaps between seasons had got really long for me. Coming into this season I had only played one game for Adelaide, picked up an injury and the first three or four games was a struggle to get into.” It is a surprise given Botha is known as a fitness fanatic and has been partaking in ultra-distance running in recent years around his cricket commitments. Botha finished his international career with South Africa in 2012 after five Tests, 78 ODIs and 40 T20Is across eight years. He captained South Africa in 21 matches across ODI and T20I cricket for 16 victories between 2008 and 2012. He moved to Australia to play for South Australia, captained the Redbacks in Australian domestic cricket and became an Australian citizen in 2016. He also played for the Adelaide Strikers and Sydney Sixers in the BBL before moving to the Hurricanes this season.
Published in Today’s Muslim, January 25th 2019.