About the Proteas
The Proteas have become one of the most successful brand names in the world of cricket since the national team was launched under that title at the birth of the United Cricket Board and its successor, Cricket South Africa, in 1991.
For an organization that is only 23 years old, the achievements have been quite staggering. For most of that period the Proteas have been ranked among the top three Test and ODI teams in the world. They are currently the No. 2 ranked team in Test cricket and are the only team who have held all three No. 1 rankings simultaneously (2012). They have a particularly outstanding record in Test cricket with successive away series wins against England in 2008 and 2012, successive drawn away series in India in 2008 and 2010 and becoming the first ever South African team to win an away Test series in Australia in 2008 and repeat in 2012.
They have reached the semi-finals three times and the quarter-finals once in the six World Cups in which they have competed which underlines their successful consistency.
The Proteas also reached the semi-final of the World Twenty20 in 2009 and won the ICC Champions Trophy in 1998 and the Commonwealth Games Gold Medal in the same year.
Graeme Smith, who led the Proteas from 2003 to 2014, is the most successful South African captain of all time and is the most capped international Test captain of all time. During this period he maintained a batting average of close to 50 which is quite outstanding considering the leadership burden he has also had to handle. He gave up captaincy of the T20 squad in 2010 to Johan Botha and of the ODI squad in 2011. AB de Villiers is now the Proteas’ captain in ODI cricket and Faf du Plessis in the T20 format.
The birth of the new South Africa has enabled the Proteas to expand their list of traditional rivals to include India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, the West Indies and Zimbabwe in addition to the ‘old foes’ from Australia, England and New Zealand. It has also given South Africa four new Test match
venues at SuperSport Park (Centurion), Senwes Park (Potchefstroom), Buffalo Park (East London) and Chevrolet Park (Bloemfontein). In addition ODIs have been played at Boland Park (Paarl), the Diamond Oval (Kimberley) and Sahara Willowmoore Park (Benoni).
CSA have awarded more than 200 caps across the three international formats. These players have totally re-written the record books of South African international cricket.
Highlights have included two world batting partnerships (415 for the first wicket between Graeme Smith and Neil McKenzie against Bangladesh and 195 for the ninth wicket between Mark Boucher and Pat Symcox against Pakistan). Nine of South Africa’s 10 wicket all-time partnership records
have now been established under the banner of Cricket South Africa. Hashim Amla has become the first South African to score a treble century in Test cricket while Jacques Kallis is the second leading centurion of all time (45 centuries) behind Sachin Tendulkar and has scored more than 12 000 runs in both Test and ODI cricket, has taken more than 250 wickets and 100 catches in both formats. He is
unquestionably ranked alongside Sir Garfield Sobers as the greatest batting all-rounder of all time.
Boucher is the most successful wicketkeeper statistically the world has ever seen with more than 500 dismissals and 5 000 runs at Test match level. In all he completed 999 dismissals in international cricket.
Shaun Pollock, Makhaya Ntini, Dale Steynband Allan Donald are all in the world’s elite group of those who have taken 300 Test match wickets while Steyn holds the South African record of having taken 10 wickets in a Test match on five occasions. Ntini is the only one to do so at Lord’s, and he also holds the best individual return of 13/132 against the West Indies. Steyn has the unique double in SA cricket of 10 wicket hauls in away Tests against Australia and India. He has been the world’s No. 1 ranked bowler since 2009. Pollock has achieved the notable double of 3 000 Test runs and more than 400 wickets.
Steyn has also broken the South African record for getting to 100, 150, 200, , 300 and 350 Test wickets and he also has the best strike rate of all time for those who have taken 200 wickets or more.
Boucher, Herschelle Gibbs, Amla, De Villiers, Smith, Gary Kirsten and Kallis (in ascending order) are the South Africans to have scored more than 5 000 Test runs.