Durban, Dec 29: Legendary all-rounder Jacques Kallis ended his Test career in style as the right-hander struck a magnificent century against India here at the Kingsmead on Sunday. This is the same venue where Kallis started his Test career against England in December, 1995.
Batting in his 166th and final Test, Kallis brought up his 45th Test hundred in the opening session of the fourth day's play. He is the second highest century maker in the five-day game after Sachin Tendulkar (51).
He got to the 100 with a single off Ravindra Jadeja in the 120th over of South Africa innings. His 100 took 273 balls. This was his 7th ton against India.
Kallis was dismissed for 115 (316 balls, 13x4) by Jadeja as the batsman top-edged a catch to MS Dhoni while attempting a sweep shot. Kallis with 115, surpassed Rahul Dravid and moved to third in all-time run scorers list in Test cricket. Kallis now has 13,289 runs to Dravid's 13,288 (164 Tests).
The 38-year-old became only the fourth South African to register a century in final Test. The other three to have ended their Test careers with a ton were Pieter van der Bijl in 1939, Lee Irvine and Barry Richards (both in 1970).
Inarguably the greatest all-rounder of the modern era - Kallis started the day on 78 in the company of nightwatchman Dale Steyn. Yesterday, he had walked out to bat with the Indian players giving him a guard of honour.
Despite South Africa's greatest cricketer being on the verge of a century, the home team's fans preferred to stay away from the stadium. Near-empty Kingsmead greeted Kallis in his final Test, just like it was on the previous three days.
Though, few spectators at the venue, saluted Kallis and applaud the century.