England wicketkeeper Matt Prior 'forced' to retire

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London, June 11: England wicketkeeper Matt Prior today announced his retirement from all forms of cricket due to achilles injury.

Calling it a "sad day", Prior said he was "forced" to retire from the game he loves. England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said Prior quit on "medical advice".

"Today is a very sad day for me as I am forced to announce my retirement from the game I love. I had been hoping and expecting to be fit for the start of the 2015 season. Unfortunately, this has proved impossible, and I have now had to reach this decision," Prior, who played 79 Tests, 68 ODIs and 10 T20Is for England, said on Thursday.

"I feel honoured to have played for Sussex and England as many times as I have and shared so many great times with both teams. I also feel privileged to have been involved in an era of such success for English cricket," the right-hander added.

The 33-year-old stumper, who was born in Johannesburg (South Africa), thanked his family, team-mates and coaches. He scored 4,099 Test runs and effected 265 dismissals.

"I would like to thank my family, team-mates, coaches and the people behind the scenes that have supported me throughout the years. I have created friendships that will last forever. It would also be remiss of me not to thank the fantastic support I have had from cricket fans both at home and abroad," he said.

'Tried to play with pride'

He said he always tried to "play with pride" and it was now time to move on. "I have always tried to play with pride and passion and have a deep belief that the team will always come first, a value that will never leave me whatever I go on to do. Although I haven't achieved all the goals I had set out to, I feel immensely proud of what I have done in my career. Sadly it is now time to move on."

ECB's Director of Cricket and former captain Andrew Strauss said, "Matt has had a wonderful career as a wicket-keeper batsman for both Sussex and England. During a period where the Test team won three Ashes series and achieved the World no.1 ranking, Matt's contribution, both on and off the field, was immense."

"It is a huge shame that his career has come to an end in this way, although his athletic wicket-keeping and counter attacking batting will live long in the memories of both his team-mates and England supporters," Strauss, who captained Prior, added.

Matt Prior career highlights (as listed by ECB)

  • 2001 - Makes his county debut as a 19-year for Sussex.
  • 2003 - Scores more than 1,000 First Class runs as Sussex wins first-ever County Championship title.
  • 2006 - Enjoys a double County Championship title and C and G Trophy Final win with Sussex.
  • 2007 - Scores 126 not out on his Test debut against West Indies at Lord's.
  • 2009 - Tastes Ashes success with England for the first time as England beat Australia 2-1.
  • 2010 - Named a Wisden Cricketer of the Year.
  • 2011 - Makes his maiden Ashes Test hundred against Australia in Sydney and finishes the five match series with 23 catches - an Ashes record for an England wicket-keeper.
  • 2012 - Included in the ICC's Test Team of the Year.
  • 2013 - Makes an unbeaten, match-saving century to help England stave off defeat in the Auckland Test Match against New Zealand. Is subsequently named England Men's Cricketer of the Year.

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