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Playing all three formats will be tough, says De Kock

Busy calendar means cricketers may opt out of some

Quinton De Kock bats for SA in the rained-out third ODI at Headingley in Leeds on July 24 2022.
Quinton De Kock bats for SA in the rained-out third ODI at Headingley in Leeds on July 24 2022.
Image: Visionhaus/Getty Images

SA's Quinton de Kock says it will become difficult for players to participate in all three formats of cricket if more games continue to be added to the sport's packed schedule.

Cricket's busy calendar attracted criticism when England all-rounder Ben Stokes announced his retirement from one-day internationals (ODI) this month.

Former Pakistan fast bowler Wasim Akram last week said he understood the reasons behind Stokes's decision, while ex-England captain Nasser Hussain described the global cricket schedule as “madness”.

“It's going to start being tough for players — three formats is a lot and it looks like more games are happening over the calendar,” De Kock said on Sunday, after England's third ODI against SA was abandoned due to rain meaning the series ended level at 1-1.

“Players need to make decisions individually and if they feel they can do it [play all three formats], I am happy for them. But guys need to take decisions into their own hands.

“The 29-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman announced his retirement from Test cricket in December, citing a desire to spend more time with his family.

“I've been roped in to play a few of the leagues but that's my own consequence,” De Kock said. “I am happy to do it.

“It's still a sacrifice but I'm slowly getting to an age where I need to think about where I want to be in my career. As long as I can do it at my own pace then I am happy.

“When you're still young you need to play all three formats and get certain things done in your career. It starts getting harder as you start getting older and the body doesn't co-operate like it used to. It's just a management thing.”

England and SA meet in three Twenty20 internationals, starting in Bristol tomorrow. - Reuters