Proteas star to pack his bags for Kolpak
Kolpak claimed another South African on Tuesday when Yorkshire revealed that Duanne Olivier had signed a three-year deal with the county.
Yorkshire said on their website that they had “beat off the attention of a number of other counties” to secure the fast bowler’s services.
They also trumped Cricket South Africa (CSA)‚ who said Olivier had rejected the offer of a two-year contract.
The news will hit cricketminded South Africans hard‚ particularly as Olivier’s form has been an important part of their team’s bowling success this summer.
His 24 wickets at an average of 14.70‚ which included a 10-wicket-haul and three five-fors‚ made him the most successful bowler in the Test series against Pakistan in December and January.
That earned Olivier 41 wickets from his first eight Tests – a record bettered only by Vernon Philander and Peter Pollock in South Africa’s history‚ while Mike Procter claimed 41 in the only seven Tests he played.
In all‚ Olivier played 10 Tests‚ taking 48 wickets at 19.25‚ and two one-day internationals – both against Pakistan last month – in which he had three scalps at an economy rate of 6.52.
“I would be lying if I said this wasn’t a difficult decision to make‚” Olivier was quoted as saying on Yorkshire’s site.
“It’s giving up playing for my country with no guarantees of playing international cricket again.
“But at the end of the day‚ I needed to be true to myself. I’ve only got this one chance to see where my talent can take me and Yorkshire just felt right to me.”
On Instagram‚ Olivier said: “My decision might be difficult for some to understand but being a professional cricket player is a short-lived career and in order for me to make the most of all my opportunities‚ I had to consider all my options.”
That didn’t stop Ottis Gibson from voicing his unhappiness in a CSA release: “We are naturally disappointed with Duanne’s decision to sign a Kolpak contract.
“He has been a key feature for us this summer and was without a doubt one of our standout performers. We held several meetings with him regarding his future with the Proteas throughout the summer and even offered him a two-year contract.
“To see him cut short a promising international career is disappointing. Ultimately‚ it was a decision we could not control despite our best efforts.”
CSA chief executive Thabang Moroe: “We find it disappointing that Duanne has taken this step after all the opportunities we have given him...