Australian wicketkeeper-batsman Brad Haddin has announced his retirement from Test and first-class retirement with immediate effect, ABC News reports. Haddin personally made the announcement at a press conference at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) though he added that he will continue playing in the Big Bash League (BBL).
Haddin’s future at the international level has been under the spotlight for quite some time after he played only the opening Test match of the recent Ashes series that Australia lost 3-2 to England. The 37-year-old pulled himself out of the reckoning for the second Test due to personal reasons but was overlooked for the remainder of the series as his long-time understudy Peter Nevill impressed with both the gloves and the bat.
Haddin’s own form in the longer format has been poor with him managing only a single 50-plus score in his last 12 Tests at an average of 15.24. The Australian veteran of 66 Test had revealed last week that he was going to take a call on his future soon and as expected, Haddin has decided to hang up his boots.
"I've only ever wanted to play at the SCG. It's great to be here today to make my announcement," Haddin told reporters. "I came to the realisation after Lord's. I've had a privileged run, but I lost the hunger on the Ashes Tour. It was an easy decision to retire. It was all about making myself the best cricketer I could be every time I walked out on the training paddock - I probably lost that hunger from there (Lord's)."
The presence of Adam Gilchrist, arguably the greatest wicketkeeper-batsman in the history of the game had a huge role to play in restricting Haddin to just 126 ODI and 34 T20 appearances for Australia. He retired from the ODI format on a high after playing a key role in his side’s victorious 2015 World Cup campaign chipping in with useful cameos, but rated the Ashes victories over the years as his career highlight.
"I think obviously, Ashes campaigns. Whether you win or lose I think, they're pretty special moments in someone's career,” he said. "For me, it's the relationships you make with your team-mates - to have the New South Wales players here today means a lot."
Steve Smith will be a great leader for Australia: Haddin
Haddin played in 300 first-class games for New South Wales, scoring 9,938 runs at an average of 38.05 and also managed 648 dismissals during his time with his state side. With the announcement of his retirement, Haddin joined the likes of Ryan Harris, Michael Clarke, Shane Watson and Chris Rogers in calling time on their Test career after Australia’s Ashes debacle.
Haddin, however, believes that the Australia can recover its past glory under the leadership of Steven Smith.
"I think Australian cricket is in good stead. We've got great depth, we've got good people around to help them (players) achieve what they need to achieve," he said. "It's an exciting time, I think we can cover all the retirements. We've got a great leader in Steve Smith, and the best thing about Steve at the moment he's on top of his game. He's going to be a great leader for Australia for a long time."
Haddin, not sursprisingly, stated that he wiuld like to spend more time with his family now that he has retired from the longer format, but insisted that he will cotinue to play T20 cricket.
"(My wife) Karina and I would like to get more involved with Westmead Hospital and see if we can do anything to help there," Haddin said. "It gives me the opportunity to sit back and watch the kids growing up. (My son) Zac says I'm not allowed to retire from, what is it, sixes (Twenty20)? So I've got to play that, yeah."
Tributes have already started pouring in for Haddin with cricketers past and present remembering one of Australia’s best wicketkeeper-batsman.Published 09 Sep 2015, 10:57 IST