In spite of being part of what could be called as ‘locking the handcuffs in your own hands’, when he and Allan Donald were part of the infamous run out in a World Cup semi-final against Australia in 1999 needing 9 runs off the last over, Lance Klusener had already carved out a niche of being one of the finest all-rounders of his time.
Born in Durban, 'Zulu' turned out to be a rebellious find for South Africa, when he debuted against India, with figures of 8 for 64. The baseball swing of the blade, carrying the reputation of being one of the finest sloggers, Lance did not disappoint his ardent followers by ending up as the Player of the Series in the World Cup 1999, he almost carried his team to the summit, not before the ill-fated semi-final against Australia had many a mind wondering. Klusener had already picked up 17 wickets and crossed 250 runs in the tournament before the semi-final. Since then, it has been a complete down slide for him with abysmal performances in the tour to West Indies and Australia in 2000-01 and 2001-02 respectively.
Klusener’s side-arm bowling with gentle pace off-cutters was a rarity, and just like the Kiwi Chris Harris's loopy medium-pacers, many a batsmen were foxed into it. He was never a regular in the side and when recalled for the 2003 World Cup, he failed to step up to the occasion and eventually his retirement was on the way after a last grasp chance on a tour to Sri Lanka in 2004.
At the start of 2012, he was picked up to play the role of an interim head coach of Dolphins back to the place where it had all begun for him in his domestic season days.
- South Africa Vs India at Eden Gardens, Kolkata (Calcutta) - Nov 27, 1996
- Last played:
- South Africa Vs Sri Lanka at Galle International Stadium, Galle - Aug 04, 2004
- South Africa Vs England at Buffalo Park, East London - Jan 19, 1996
- Last played:
- South Africa Vs West Indies at Kennington Oval (The Oval), London - Sep 18, 2004