Johannesburg: Graeme Smith contemplated stepping down from leadership role in all forms of cricket after last year's World Cup but was talked out of quitting Test captaincy by coach Gary Kirsten, a report said.
Smith led South Africa in all three formats for eight years but quit captaincy of the Twenty20 and ODI teams in August 2010 and April 2011 respectively.
Smith said he wanted to step down as Test skipper also at the same time he relinquished ODI captaincy but Kirsten convinced him to continue in the longest format of the game.
"After the World Cup, when things were tough, it certainly was something that was on my mind. Gary played a role in me keeping the captaincy. He talked me into doing it for longer and he was the reason I decided to carry on," Smith was quoted as saying by 'ESPNcricinfo'.
South Africa's loss against New Zealand in the World Cup quarterfinals was a massive setback for Smith and he addressed the media almost in tears as he explained how he had wanted to lift the coveted trophy and then step down as ODI captain.
He did not return home with the rest of the team but flew to Ireland to propose to the woman who is now his wife, Morgan Deane. South African public criticised him in many forums, for his lack of both leadership and form.
Smith described the period that followed the World Cup as "the most difficult" of his career and he said he thought reducing his load would allow him to concentrate on batting.
However, without any clear replacement available in the longest format, Smith was asked to stay on as captain and he was convinced by Kirsten, who was then newly recruited as coach.