Damien Wright retires from Australian first-class cricket
Damien Wright, the Victoria fast bowler, has announced his retirement from Australian first-class cricket. Wright was part of the Australian first-class circuit for 15 years since his debut for Tasmania in 1997-98. He's been part of three of the last four Sheffield Shield-winning teams, for Tasmania in 2006-07 and twice for Victoria, where he moved to in 2008-09. He joined Worcestershire in January this year and will be part of their domestic season starting April.
"I guess I wanted to go out on my own terms whilst feeling satisfied and happy," said Wright, who picked up 375 wickets in 116 first-class games. Victoria's final Sheffield Shield game of the season, against Queensland, was also his last. "When our match against Queensland finished, I realised it was my time and the right moment for me to go out. I've been really lucky to be a part of several titles and achieve what I have during my career; it's been an amazing journey and a ride I've really enjoyed."
Wright said he was grateful to Greg Shipperd, his coach at Tasmania and Victoria, for his mentoring. "I've been very lucky to have Shippy as a coach throughout my career in both Tasmania and now in Victoria," Wright said. "He's provided me with many opportunities, he started my first-class career off and now ironically I'll finish it under him. I'm extremely fortunate to have him as a mentor - he is someone who has played a huge role in my career and I thank him for that."
Apart from his skills as a pace bowler, Wright was also an effective batsman in the lower order. He averaged 24.08 with the bat and among his all-round highlights was his performance for Tasmania in their Sheffield Shield win in 2006-7, where he claimed eight wickets and contributed 67 and 47 with the bat in the final. In 2009-10, he overcame injury after missing Victoria's first five games to play a significant role with the ball in his team's eventual success.
He's also Victoria's bowling coach and hopes to continue that role.