Cape Town - Stalwart Proteas Test captain Graeme Smith has
moved to ease any fears that his granting of Irish citizenship may be a prelude
to his departure from top-flight cricket any time soon.
That much seemed evident from Twitter (@GraemeSmith49) on
Thursday - the opening batsman, who turns 33 on February 1, said: “I love my
country and remain, always, a loyal South African. Half my family is Irish now,
and visiting them is easier with dual nationality.”
Smith is married to Irish singer Morgan Deane and they have
started a family.
He has played Test cricket for South Africa since 2002 (114
caps) and averages just under 50.
His experience and leadership for the world’s No 1-ranked
side will be invaluable in the three-Test home series against resurgent
Australia from mid-February, especially as the Proteas get to grips with the
retirement of great all-rounder Jacques Kallis.
Though the Irish citizenship will have no immediate impact
on his contract with English county side Surrey, should he retire from the
international arena at some stage he would then not have to be classified as an
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