Australia’s fourth highest test cricket wicket taker, Mitchell Johnson, will retire from cricket at the conclusion of the WACA test today.
“I feel now is the best time to say goodbye,” Johnson said in a statement released before the start of the final day’s play in Perth.
“I have been lucky enough to have had a wonderful career and enjoyed every moment of playing for my country. It’s been an incredible ride. But the ride has to come to an end at some point and to do so here at the WACA is very special.”
Before the start of the second test against the Kiwis Johnson acknowledged that he had been pondering retirement “most days”, perhaps reflective of a drop in form seen over recent series.
“I’ve given the decision a lot of thought. Beyond this match, I’m just not sure that I can continue competing consistently at the level required to wear the Baggy Green. My career has certainly had its up and downs but I can honestly say I have given it my all and am proud of everything I have achieved,” said Johnson.
He leaves the game as Australia’s fourth-highest wicket taker with 311 scalps from 73 tests, only overshadowed by likes of Australian cricketing legends Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Dennis Lillee.
Johnson also played 153 one-day internationals for his country, winning the world cup earlier this year when the tournament was hosted in Australia and New Zealand, along with 30 T20 appearances.
In 2014 he was named as International Cricket Council’s (ICC) test player of the year, adding to the ICC player of the year honour he received five years earlier.
Johnson will be best remembered for his exploits in the Ashes series held two summers ago in Australia, helping Australia to a 5-0 clean sweep over the English on the back of hostile and at times unplayable spells of bowling.
Johnson’s spell against the English in Adelaide will go down in cricketing folklore, using sheer pace and guile to make the English batsman appear mere novices on what was a placid Adelaide oval pitch.
Well played, Mitch. Fantastic career. Australia, as seen in the video below, will miss you.
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