Australian fast bowler Brett Lee says he has no regrets after announcing his retirement from international cricket.
Lee announced his retirement at a press conference this afternoon after returning from Australia’s one-day tour of England early with a calf strain.
Australia’s selectors had been keen for the veteran paceman to play on until the Twenty20 World Cup in September.
And there he was an expectation he would play in the Big Bash this summer after his success with titleholders the Sydney Sixers last season.
But the 35-year-old said he knew his time was up after suffering his “first proper muscle tear” in 20 years of cricket.
“At 35 now I’m not Benjamin Button. I’m not going the other way,” Lee said.
“It’s my time to walk away and let these young guys build their careers and step into the spotlight.”
“I feel like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders this morning. I’ve been anxious for the last couple of days.”
Lee pointed to Australia’s World Cup victory in 2003 and taking a Test hat-trick as career highlights he would savour, but said one of his fondest memories was Australia’s Ashes Test loss by two runs at Edgbaston in 2005.
“Even though we lost by two runs, that’s still one of my favourite Test matches because of the spirit in which it was played,” he said.
His longevity in the game was something he hoped cricket fans remembered him for, he said.
“I feel like I’ve had more comeback sequels than Rambo.”
“If anything, people can look back and know I gave it my best. You can look at records but to me what I’m proud of is my longevity.”
In 76 Tests he claimed 310 wickets and also had a useful batting average of 20.
He also claimed 380 wickets in 221 one-day internationals, becoming just the second Australian behind Glenn McGrath to take 300 or more Test and one-day scalps. (Herald Sun)
Best bowling: 5-22
Bowling average: 23.18
Runs (batting): 1100
Batting average: 16.92
Best bowling: 3-23
Bowling average: 25.5
Runs (batting): 101
HS: 43 not out
Best bowling: 5-30
Bowling average: 30.82
Runs (batting): 1451
Batting average: 20.15