Australia’s captain Michael Clarke has announced his retirement from One Day International (ODI) cricket ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 final against New Zealand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Sunday. Clarke said in a press conference that the final would be his last match in green and gold. However, he would continue as Australia’s captain in Test cricket.
“Tomorrow will be my last ODI for Australia. I think it’s the right time for me and the Australian cricket team” he said. When asked about the team’s preparation, he said, “I couldn’t be happier with the way the guys have prepared for this tournament. The team is ready,” Clarke said.
Clarke, who has been suffering from a back injury, informed the selectors just an hour before making this announcement. He also spoke with his teammates for a few minutes before the press conference.
“I’ve just spoken to my teammates and spoke to James Sutherland and Rod Marsh and Darren Lehmann and informed them that tomorrow will be my last ODI for Australia. I’m extremely grateful and thankful. I just found out that tomorrow will be my 245th One Day game for Australia,” he said.
Clarke said that Test cricket remains the pinnacle for him and he hopes that retirement from ODI cricket will him in prolonging his Test career.
“So two finals and one quarterfinal for my time in World Cups, and I’m hopeful that it’ll prolong my test career, as well, and that’s obviously a priority for me — to continue to be successful in the Test format, and I think by walking away from one-day cricket it probably gives me my best opportunity,” Clarke concluded his opening statement.
Asked about his legacy as Australia’s Test captain, Clarke said his legacy is defined by the way his teammates thing of him.
“My legacy is defined by the way my teammates thing of me,” he said, in one of the most telling statements made by him in the press conference.”