Gunther cuts ties with Proteas

Andre Nel has announced his retirement from the international arena and will play county cricket for Surrey.

Nel played his last match against England at The Oval in August last year and has since been on the periphery of the Test squad. The ground where he ended his international career will now be his new home after he signed a three-year Kolpak deal with Surrey.

‘Playing for my country for the last eight years was a dream come true for me,’ said Nel. ‘I would like to thank my captain, Graeme Smith, and my coaches, Mickey Arthur and Vinnie Barnes, and all my team mates for their support and guidance.

‘I have many happy memories and wish the Proteas the best for the future. I would also like to thank Cricket South Africa and Gerald Majola for the support I have been given,’ he said.

‘To the fans who have supported me, you have made playing at the highest level something very special for me. I am sorry I did not have the chance to say farewell from the field.’

Nel reserved special mention for the two people who had the biggest impact on his career.

‘Last, but not least, a special thanks to my two biggest mentors, Ray Jennings and Shaun Pollock. Without your advice and influence I would not have made it as far as I did.’

Nel turned out for the Lions this season but no doubt was enticed by the lure of the pound.

‘Surrey are a huge club, entering an exciting new era with Chris Adams at the helm, and I am looking forward to using my experience to work with some of the younger bowlers on the staff and ensure they get back to the top of the English game,’ he said.

‘I cannot wait to arrive in April and pull on the Surrey shirt for the first game of the season.’