The South African steps down after two years coaching the national team.
South Africa coach Gary Kirsten has announced he will no longer continue with the national team after stepping down from his role for family reasons.
Kirsten was appointed in August 2011 on a two-year deal, although Cricket South Africa (CSA) were hoping he would take up the optional two-year extension after a successful spell at the helm.
Under the guidance of the 45-year-old the Proteas have risen to No.1 in the ICC Test rankings following a hugely impressive year in 2012 in the five-day game.
The South African will be a big loss to the side as they look to maintain their current form without him.
“It has been a huge privilege to represent my country as player and coach and to have been given the responsibility of growing the team,” Kirsten was quoted on Sky Sports.
“I would particularly like to thank Cricket South Africa for allowing me the flexibility to combine my coaching job with my family life during my tenure.”
The former batsman played 101 Tests for his country between 1993 and 2004, scoring 7,289 runs at an average of 45.27.
Yet it is as a coach that he is most well known in the modern game, guiding South Africa to world dominance alongside captain Graeme Smith to lead the country to the top of the five-day batting, bowling and all-rounder rankings.
Kirsten was instrumental in giving paceman Vernon Philander his debut shortly after he was appointed as coach and the bowler has had a brilliant 18 months, taking 89 wickets in just 16 Test matches.
South Africa are due to tour Sri Lanka in July and August so CSA will be wanting to move quickly to identify the successor to the Proteas coach.