South African batter Quinton de Kock cruised to his seventh Test century on Friday as his side took a respectable lead of 225 in the first innings.
De Kock had a rollercoaster ride in 2020 and early 2021 as he was thrust into captaincy in the limited-overs format and then for the red-ball games.
The Proteas star didn’t have a good time during his leadership, and he too failed to capitalize on the chances given to him.
However, the 28-year-old was axed from his position and smashed an unflappable hundred in the very next encounter against West Indies in the first contest of the two-match Test series.
De Kock celebrated his century by showing off the sticker of his bat that read ‘Rockwood’ and holded the ring finger of his right hand with the thumb, spreading the other three fingers in the process.
When asked about the reason behind his unique celebration, the Johannesburg-born expounded that one of his friends recently had his finger shot off in Afghanistan, and ‘Rockwood’ stands for the rhino conversation trust the former is associated with.
“It’s just a friend group I have back home. A couple people know I am doing this initiative with the rhino thing and one of my friends got his fingers shot off in Afghanistan, and I said I will salute to him,” De Kock told the official broadcaster.
Concluding his brief interview, the former South African skipper reiterated that his action was to applaud his friend, and he would be receiving texts for his gesture.
“I am doing Rockwood and the Rhino conservation and it’s a whole group of us. The one night we had a braai and we started talking and I said his finger being shot off is quite a limelight in our group of friends so I said I will do that as an accolade for him. I couldn’t believe it happened first time. I am sure my phone with the boys’ group is going to be buzzing,” de Kock revealed.
The left-handed batter smashed an unbeaten 170-ball 141, leaving West Indies bowlers in tatters.