Ricky Ponting, outside of Australia at least, is a man who divides opinion. If he is clearly held in great regard by his compatriots and judging by the guard of honour and comments afterwards, South Africans, the same cannot be said for England.
While his skill, repute and run-scoring feats can not be argued with, some followers of the game will argue that he wasn't a great captain and that he often cracked under pressure.
Australian captain Michael Clarke haspaid tribute to South Africa's performance during the Test series, which the Proteas won 1-0 following a 309-run win in the final Test in Perth.
Clarke scored a double-century in the series opener in Brisbane but saw his side only able draw the opening two matches, and South Africa were able to take advantage at the WACA.
Ricky Ponting admits that his final outing for Australia was one of his most nerve-wracking, and that his inability to score runs under pressure was one of the main reasons why he decided to retire.
"It's been a pretty long and tough week. I know I've been more nervous, this game, than any other game I've played, just for the reason for how much it means to play for Australia and wanting to finish the right way," he said.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look back on the third and final Test between Australia and South Africa in Perth.
South Africa won the game comprehensively, overcoming a slow start and thanks to centuries from Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers, the margin of victory was an impressive 309 runs. The win meant that former Australian captain Ricky Ponting had to bow out from international cricket with defeat.
South Africa handed Australia a 309-run thrashing on day four of the third and final Test in Perth to remain at the head of the ICC Test rankings.
Their position had been in doubt in the early part of the match but they came back strongly and dismissed Australia for 322 on the final day having asked them to chase 632 to win.
Ben Hilfenhaus and Peter Siddle, whose lion-hearted efforts so nearly earned Australia a Test victory over South Africa in Adelaide, will not feature in the third and final match in Perth.
The pair will be rested, meaning one or both of quick bowlers John Hastings or Josh Hazlewood will make their Test debut while South Africa also have some important selection decisions to make.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look back on the career of Ricky Ponting after he announced his retirement from international cricket.
Ricky Ponting retirement talk has heightened recently due to his loss of form in the Test arena - he had already retired from ODI and T20I cricket and resigned the Test captaincy last year.
Former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has announced that the upcoming third Test against South Africa in Perth will be his last and he will subsequently retire from international cricket.
Ponting led Australia between 2002 and 2011, guiding the side to two World Cup successes in 2003 and 2007 and overseeing a period of dominance in Test cricket.
Kevin Pietersen dazzled once again and was named man of the match for England in their unexpected series-leveling triumph in Mumbai. He is also this week's CW Player of the Week, beating nine other centurions, as well as Monty Panesar and Tino Best, to the award.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket newsas we look back on the second Test between Australia and South Africa in Adelaide, which saw Faf du Plessis score an unbeaten century on debut to stave off defeat.
Australia have called up Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Johnson and John Hastings for the third and final Test against South Africa in Perth.
James Pattinson misses out through injury while batsman Rob Quiney has been left out with Shane Watson now fit to return. Johnson's recall makes the squad a 14-strong party.
Francois du Plessis batted throughout the final day of the second Test in Adelaide, scoring an unbeaten century to ensure South Africa and Australia drew.
His unbeaten 110 occupied 376 deliveries and along with heroic efforts from AB de VIlliers and Jacques Kallis, South Africa kept Australia at bay, closing on 248 for eight in their second innings.
South Africa will fly in all-rounder Ryan McLaren as cover for Jacques Kallis and Vernon Philander ahead of the third Test against Australia which begins on Friday.
In other news from Australia, it has been confirmed that James Pattinson will miss most of the remainder of the Australian summer as a result of the side pain that he felt on the third day of the ongoing second Test.
It takes several elements to fall into place for a team to get to the top of their sport, and perhaps even more to stay there, as well as a little luck along the way.
England, India and now South Africa have all recently had spells at the top of the Test rankings but been unable to retain their spot for long. John Pennington looks at how strong India, England and South Africa's reserves have been over the last two years.
Vernon Philander and Jacques Kallis were early casualties for South Africa, even before they suffered a mauling at the hands of Australia on the opening day of the second Test in Adelaide.
Philander didn't even make the team due to a sore back and Kallis bowled just 3.3 overs before limping off with a hamstring strain. Australia went on to close the day on 482 for five.
Francois du Plessis will make his Test debut for South Africa when they play Australia in the second Test which begins tomorrow (22nd November) in Adelaide.
Du Plessis will come into the side as the replacement for JP Duminy, whose tour was ended by a ruptured Achilles tendon during the opening Test in Brisbane, which was drawn.
Adaptability has quickly become a watchword for South Africa since arriving in Australia. Whether it be from Sydney to Brisbane, or as now, from Brisbane to Adelaide, they are being faced with different challenges at each venue.
So far, they have done a reasonable job, holding off Australia to draw in Brisbane and keep a firm hold of the number one Test ranking that they are defending, but fast bowler Morne Morkel knows that more improvement is still needed.
Dean Elgar, who was called up as JP Duminy's replacement ahead of the second Test against Australia in Adelaide, is ready to bat anywhere in the order should he be handed a debut on 22nd November.
He is not alone in that regard - of the team that played in Brisbane four of the top six batsmen had previously opened the batting - but hopes his versatility can benefit the Proteas moving forward.
Shane Watson is in line to make a comeback to the Australian Test team after he was included in the squad for the second Test against South Africa.
He missed the first Test with a calf injury and the 13-man squad also includes Rob Quiney, who replaced Watson at number three in the order.
Since taking over the Test captaincy, Michael Clarke has hit an unbeaten triple-century, an unbeaten double-century and another double-century for good measure. His stunning form with the bat while leading the side sees his average jump from 50.84 in all matches to 66.36 as skipper.
Perhaps just as remarkably, this is hardly unusual. The great Sir Don Bradman averaged 101.50 in the 24 matches he led Australia - a fraction more than his career average and of the 10 current Test captains, only Graeme Smith's stats suffer for leading the side.
Fresh from scoring a century in the darwn opening Test in Brisbane, Hashim Amla says that South Africa are ready to adapt to whatever conditions lie in wait in Adelaide, where the second Test will be held.
Amla's 104 helped South Africa post 450 in the first innings at the Gabba, although he made an important 38 in the second innings on the final day to stave off Australia's victory charge.
Stuart Law has been appointed as Australia's new batting coach on an interim basis following Justin Langer's decision to take over as Western Australia coach.
Former Bangladesh and Sri Lanka coach Law has been heading up Australia's Centre of Excellence as well as working with the Women's team and the Under-19s.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look back on the final day of the first Test between Australia and South Africa in Brisbane.
Australia went into the final day with a narrow lead thanks to Michael Clarke scoring a brilliant unbeaten double century and Ed Cowan hitting 100 for the first time.
The draw between Australia and South Africa in Brisbane was probably the right result, according to Proteas captain Graeme Smith, although he expected more from his bowlers.
In allowing Australia to progress from 40 for three to 565 for five declared, South Africa's chances of winning the match disappeared as they failed to keep up the pressure on the home side.
There was to be no miracle win for either side in Brisbane and both Australia and South Africa were forced to settle for a draw in the opening Test at the Gabba.
Australia declared on 565 for five after Michael Hussey scored 100 and South Africa closed on 166 for five, an overall lead of 51.
It is Jacques Kallis who wins this week's award. He ended day one against Australia on 84 and turned that into 147 on day three following a second day washout. His innings helped South Africa make 450 in their first innings.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look ahead to the final day of the first Test between Australia and South Africa in Brisbane.
Australia go into the final day with a narrow lead thanks to Michael Clarke scoring a brilliant unbeaten double century and Ed Cowan hitting 100 for the first time. That was in response to South Africa's 450 which was built upon centuries by Hashim Amla and Jacques Kallis.
Despite suffering a freak injury that ended his tour early and being forced to watch as players queue up to make the number seven spot in the order their own, South African batsman JP Duminy is staying positive.
He ruptured an Achilles tendon during the warm-down after the opening day of the first Test in Brisbane and has been ruled out of any cricket for between four and six months.
Dean Elgar has seen off the likes of Colin Ingram and Ashwell Prince to be named as South Africa's replacement for the injured JP Duminy for their ongoing tour of Australia.
Some of the gloss of South Africa's outstanding first day against Australia in Brisbane has been removed after it was confirmed that batsman JP Duminy has ruptured the Achilles tendon in his left foot.
The injury, suffered during a fitness drill in the warm-down, will leave him sidelined for anything up to six months and he is set to undergo surgery on Saturday morning (10th November).
Little went right on the opening day for Australia against South Africa in Brisbane, although James Pattinson was probably their best bowler, with one for 53 in 20 overs.
That included the early wicket of Graeme Smith, although Pattinson admits that the fast bowlers failed to hit the right lengths early on and were unable to bowl well consistently as the day progressed.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look ahead to the Test series between Australia and South Africa, and the news that a secret dossier has been leaked.
The dossier apparently details Australia's plans to combat South Africa's players but the South African camp have played down its appearance, Graeme Smith saying he hasn't read it and in any case, nothing new is included.
Although there has been plenty of talk about a leaked dossier that appears to detail Australia's plans to derail South Africa's challenge, captain Graeme Smith is concentrating on on-field matters ahead of the first Test in Brisbane.
The game gets underway tonight (9th November) and with the number one Test ranking at stake, Smith wants to ensure his team stay at the top for as long as they possibly can.
South Africa coach Gary Kirsten has brushed aside suggestions that the Australia team his side will face in Brisbane is significantly weakened by the absence of Shane Watson.
Watson is unavailable due to a calf injury and has been replaced by Victoria batsman Robert Quiney, who is set to make his Test debut at the Gabba on Friday (9th November).
Rob Quiney is set to make his Test debut for Australia against South Africa on Friday (9th November) after Shane Watson was rueldruled out through injury.
Quiney, 30, was brought into the squad as cover after Watson suffered a calf injury playing for New South Wales, and the Victorian batsman will now become the 429th player to earn his Test cap for Australia.
Australia's National Selection Panel have called up Victoria opener Rob Quiney as cover for Shane Watson for the first Test against South Africa which begins on Friday. Watson was forced to withdraw from New South Wales' recently concluded Sheffield Shield match with a calf injury and is rated as doubtful for the first Test.
After seven wickets fell yesterday, mainly thanks to the excellence of Dale Steyn, the bowlers on either side were able to break through just once between them today as the already flat pitch at the SCG got flatter still.
Australia A added 155 to their overnight total before declaring not having lost a wicket, while the South Africans lost only Alviro Petersen before stumps, closing on 128 for one after 44 overs.
A cricket video for Cricket World TV about the latest cricket news as we look ahead to the three-match Test series between Australia and South Africa which begins in Brisbane on 9th November.
Australia to into the series with injury worries surrounding Ricky Ponting and having just lost Patrick Cummins to a serious back problem. South Africa have a clean bill of health and are protecting a proud unbeaten record overseas which stretches back until 2006.
Australia's preparations for the first Test against South Africa in Brisbane have been hit by injury concerns for Ricky Ponting and Patrick Cummins.
Ponting has a hamstring problem and has been withdrawn from the current round of Sheffield Shield cricket and Cummins faces a lengthy layoff with a spine bone stress injury.
The hectic nature of international and domestic cricket schedules often forces players to play two and sometimes three formats within a short period of time.
Most players have become accustomed to the need to adapt to each format to maintain their form and Alviro Petersen must do the same in Australia.
South Africa's bowling coach Allan Donald s putting his full confidence and support behind the trio of fast bowlers who have been picked to take on Australia.
The Proteas begin their tour with a three-day game against a strong Australia 'A' side in Sydney on a pitch that is far bouncier than Donald remembers from his previous visit.
South African Test captain Graeme Smith was in confident mood prior to his team's departure for Australia, where they play the first of three Tests in Brisbane beginning on 9th November.
The Proteas are proud of an excellent recent record away from home, which has seen them rise to the top of the Test rankings on the back of series wins in Australia, England and the West Indies as well as drawing in India last time around.
Australia have opted to retain Matthew Wade as their Test wicket-keeper ahead of the opening match against South Africa, which begins in Brisbane on 9th November.
Wade travelled to the West Indies and made his Test debut with Brad Haddin absent due to personal circumstances, and he has made enough of a case to be retained in the team.
All-rounder Andrew McDonald will captain Australia 'A' when they take on the touring South Africans in a three-day game beginning on 2nd November in Sydney.
Uncapped players Nathan Coulter-Nile, Liam Davis, Alex Doolan and Rob Quiney are included in the team that will get South Africa's tour off to a testing start.
Rory Kleinveldt and Francois du Plessis are the only uncapped members of a 15-man Test squad to tour Australia for three matches in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth next month.
All-rounder Kleinveldt, 29, was named in South Africa's provisional ICC World Twenty20 squad but was not selected in the final 15-man squad, while du Plessis has featured consistently in both One-Day and Twenty20 International cricket for the Proteas in the last 18 months.