Batsman Johann Myburgh, who broke the great Graeme Pollock’s record as the youngest double-centurion in South African first-class cricket, has retired.
Myburgh forged a relatively successful provincial and franchise career for Northerns and the Titans, respectively, before moving two New Zealand in 2007. After a stint with Canterbury, he went to the United Kingdom and played for Durham and Hampshire before ending a near 20-year first-class career with Somerset.
The 37-year-old’s big-hitting prowess in English county cricket was on display as recently as August, when a brisk 103 not out razed an Essex bowling attack spearheaded by Australian seamer Peter Siddle in a key Vitality T20 Blast fixture in Taunton.
The LC de Villiers Oval in Pretoria was the scene of his record-breaking feat in February 1998. A mere 17 years old at the time, Myburgh struck a resounding 203 for Northerns B against Easterns in the UCB Bowl.
‘What a special place this has been for me and I have felt so at home here in Taunton. My boy Joshua was born at Musgrove Park Hospital and I’m convinced that I now have Somerset blood pumping in my veins,’ Myburgh wrote in an open letter earlier this year.
‘My teammates have, of course, played a massive role in my enjoyable time here in the South West. I have made friendships that will last forever, seen young boys turn into men and enjoyed the inner child in the seasoned guys.
‘I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for the great times both on and off the field and more importantly, for accepting me into your changing room and making it ours.’
The talented right-hander also played for South Africa Under-19, alongside eventual international cricketers Jonathan Trott, Graeme Smith and Jacques Rudolph, in 1999.
His younger brother is Stephan Myburgh, who was also born in the Transvaal – and played 13 ODIs and 28 T20Is for the Netherlands.