Cricket: Fear over sight loss forces Boucher to quit
Mark Boucher announced his immediate retirement from international cricket yesterday, admitting that he faced an "uncertain recovery" and a fight to retain the sight in his left eye.
Boucher is likely to require further surgery as doctors battle to repair the damage caused by a flying bail which struck his eye while he was keeping wicket for South Africa against Somerset on Monday.
He had a three-hour operation on Monday evening to repair a severe laceration to his eyeball and will return home to South Africa as soon as the medical staff give him the all-clear to fly. The freak nature of the injury and its severity have rocked the South African team. Now they have to come to terms with the sudden retirement of a player who has been a key player for 15 years.
Captain Graeme Smith was visibly shaken when he read out a pre-prepared statement on Boucher's behalf, but he will have to lift his team quickly with the first Test against England a week away, when AB de Villiers will keep wicket.
England last night warmed up for that series by wrapping up a 4-0 one-day series victory against Australia as they won by seven wickets at Old Trafford.