South Africa pair Kyle Abbott and Rilee Rossouw have quit international cricket to sign Kolpak deals with Hampshire.
Right-arm seamer Abbott, 29, returns to the county he played for as an overseas signing in 2014 on a four-year deal. Rossouw, 27, can open or bat lower down the order and has joined Hampshire on a three-year deal.
A tearful Abbott announced his international retirement after South Africa’s victory in the second Test against Sri Lanka on Thursday. “It’s been one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make through my years of playing cricket,” he said. “It’s the right decision for me.
“I’d like to thank Cricket South Africa, my team-mates, and my family for the ongoing support through this time,” he added. “I would really appreciate the public respecting my decision.”
After confirming he signed the deal five months ago, he said: “There were a couple of evenings when I went to sleep thinking, ‘have I made the right decision?’ but I’ve always woken up the next morning going, ‘actually I have’.”
Abbott did not take a wicket in the Proteas’ 282-run victory over Sri Lanka in Cape Town, which was his 11th Test appearance, alongside 28 One Day International and 21 Twenty20 international caps.(BBC,2017)