Jacques Kallis was very close to his father, says mentor Richardson

Jacques Kallis who gave credit to his parents after his farewell Test in Durban on Monday, was particularly close to his father (Henry), according to Keith Richardson, the mentor, who stood behind Kallis’ at every difficult time in his illustrious career.

by BIPIN DANI

Jacques Kallis at a training session at the Ad...

Jacques Kallis (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Jacques lost his mother when he was nine years old”, Richardson said. “This meant that his father who never re-married, brought him up – together with his sister, Janine. He devoted the rest of his life to his two children.

“As a result he was very close to his father who supported him right through his school career – always willing to transport him to practices and matches”, he continued. “I remember him coming to school on Sundays and bowling to him for hours in the nets – just the two of them”.

Fear of flying

“When Jacques left school and became a provincial and then national player and his father attended every home game,” Richardson continued. “However, Henry was afraid of flying and was very reluctant to travel. On one occasion, very early in Jacques’ career, Henry agreed to allow Dr Ali Bacher to fly him up to a Durban Test match.

“He hated flying and after that Test match, refused every offer to fly anywhere again. As a result, he never saw Jacques play at any upcountry venue again except at Newlands”.

“That did not stop him watching matches ball by ball on TV though”, Richardson added. “He was a nervous watcher and smoked dozens of cigarettes whenever Jacques was batting. Right up to his death in 2003 (ten years ago this year), he always gave Jacques down to earth advice on his shot selection when he came home!

Jacques Kallis at a training session at the Ad...

“He brought up Jacques very strictly and demanded high standards from him. This has been very evident over the years with regard to every aspect of life – including sport. His demeanor and approach has always been beyond reproach and credit for this must be given to his parents”.

Lighter bat

“His father always insisted on the young Jacques looking every inch a cricketer and on using a light bat when heavy ones were all the rage. He wanted him to get his technique right first before using heavier bats when he had acquired strength.

“Henry also took on the responsibility of washing and ironing Jacques’s whites and insisted that his son clean his pads and scrape off every red mark from the blade of his bat before going to a match”.

“When Kallis received his first cricket pay cheque in 1995, he gave it to his father to fix their home’s leaking roof,” Richardson added. “When Henry was critically ill in 2003 with lung cancer, Jacques was on tour in England playing in a triangular series with England and Zimbabwe. He played in the number 65 which was the age of his father.

“When he scored a hundred in a one day international at Canturbury against Zimbabwe, he pointed his bat to the number on his back and thus dedicated this hundred to his Dad.

“A month later, he was back home at his father’s bedside when he was dying. When, some years later, he scored his first double hundred against India, he also dedicated that to his dad by raising his bat to the heavens”, he adds further. “I am not surprised in the least that Jacques gave credit to his parents after the game.”

Kallis included in Protea squad for BOK T20 CHALLENGE

A derivative work from another shot (just remo...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Jacques Kallis has been included in the Proteas Blue Label Telecoms T20 squad for the Challenge match against the Absa Springboks that will be the cricket highlight of the opening day of the Cell C Festival of Cricket at Sahara Park Newlands on Friday.

Cell C also announced today that they will be donating R10 to the Jacques Kallis Scholarship Foundation for every run that Kallis scored during his Test career. This amounts to R132 890. The cheque will be presented to Kallis during the innings break on Friday.

“Jacques has been a true giant of the game,” commented Jose dos Santos, Cell C Acting Chief Executive. “The nation owes him so much, not just for his performances as a world-class cricketer over an extended period of time but for the role model he has been to our youth that stretches far beyond the game of cricket.

“The Foundation is something that is very close to his heart and he may have retired from cricket but we all know that he will continue to work tirelessly to create the opportunity for young South Africans to gain the priceless gift of a good education and the chance to live their cricketing dreams.

“Cell C is delighted to be associated with this project and we hope our contribution will inspire others to help less privileged members of South African society.”

Proteas Blue Label Telecoms T20 squad: Faf du Plessis (The Unlimited Titans, capt), Hashim Amla (Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras), Henry Davids (The Unlimited Titans), Quinton de Kock (bizhub Highveld Lions), JP Duminy (Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras), Imran Tahir (bizhub Highveld Lions), Jacques Kallis (Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras), Ryan McLaren (Chevrolet Knights), David Miller (Sunfoil Dolphins), *Morne Morkel (The Unlimited Titans), Wayne Parnell (Chevrolet Warriors), Aaron Phangiso (bizhub Highveld Lions), *Dale Steyn (Nashua Mobile Cape Cobras), Lonwabo Tsotsobe (bizhub Highveld Lions), David Wiese (The Unlimited Titans).

Players marked with an asterisk will not be playing on medical grounds but will be present.

Bipin Dani

A Civil Engineer by profession, Bipin is also a senior cricket journalist in India.
He has toured UAE, Sri Lanka, Morocco and Malaysia, to name a few, and contributes to a large number of newspapers in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
His twitter bio reads: Eat cricket stories, drink cricket stories, sleep cricket stories.

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