New Zealand news July 17, 2013

Mathew Sinclair announces his retirement

ESPNcricinfo staff

Mathew Sinclair, the Central Districts batsman who played 33 Tests for New Zealand, has announced his retirement from all cricket. Sinclair, 37, has been a fixture in the Central Districts side for 18 seasons and is the team's all-time highest run-scorer, with more than 15,000 runs across all formats, and he remained a solid performer last summer, with 646 Plunket Shield runs at 40.37.

He burst on to the Test cricket scene with 214 on debut against West Indies in Wellington in 1999-2000, still the highest score by a New Zealand Test debutant and the equal third-highest from all countries. However, despite posting another Test double-century against Pakistan less than two years later, Sinclair struggled to find consistency at international level.

His 33 Tests were spread across 11 years and his last appearance for his country came against Australia in Hamilton in early 2010, when he was recalled for the first time in two years. Sinclair also played 54 one-day internationals and two Twenty20 internationals, as well as helping Central Districts win eight domestic trophies.

"Having taken a few months since the end of last season to consider my options I have decided that the timing is right to call time on my playing career," Sinclair said. "I have two young children and a wife who I want to spend more time with and the constant travel that the Stags endure each year makes that pretty tough.

"I am also at the stage where I want to get into a career outside of cricket and unless you are in a position to totally devote yourself, it's difficult to get the opportunities that I am after. There are some really talented younger batsmen coming through for CD, so I feel it's the right time from the team's perspective as well.

"Central Districts has been good to me and I never really considered playing for anyone else. We have always played a positive style of game, and the quality of the people in the side meant that there was always a great team spirit. My first hundred for the Stags was really special as it helped win a game and proved that I could succeed at that level.

"Watching Peter Ingram beat my record for the highest individual score for the Stags, Jamie How's double hundred in a one day game and Michael Mason's heroics with the bat to win the Ford Trophy two seasons ago are special moments that I will also cherish.

"While it would have been nice to have played more for my country, I do look back on my time in the Black Caps with a lot of pride and satisfaction. Getting 214 on debut against the West Indies was a real highlight; especially as we went on to win the Test."

Sinclair will end his career with more first-class runs for a single association - 9148 - than any other player in New Zealand, as well as a record 27 first-class centuries for Central Districts. On four occasions he was the leading run scorer in the New Zealand first-class competition, in 1998-99, 2005-06, 2008-09 and 2011-12.

"It's hard to put into words the contribution that Mathew has made to Central Districts," Hugh Henderson, the Central Districts chief executive, said. "In years to come his run scoring records will still stand and people will look back at him as an all-time great of the domestic game in this country.

"It is remarkable that in a career of such length that Mathew never really had a poor season, he just kept scoring runs. It's unlikely there will be another player like him in our history. On behalf of Central Districts we would like to thank him wholeheartedly for his contribution to the game and our association. We wish him all the best in the next stages of his career outside of cricket."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Steven on July 19, 2013, 3:14 GMT

    I noticed that in his career he was lucky enough to play Australia more than any other country, at a time when the aussies were strong. He never semed to get the chances against lesser teams. NZ would pick him to play against the best, and like many he struggled. Good luck skippy

  • Dummy4 on July 18, 2013, 2:06 GMT

    very sad indeed, he was a good players... but newzeland cricket didnt utilize him correctly...anyway all the best in the future, hope he have some very good moments with his family....all the best sinclair

  • Dummy4 on July 17, 2013, 15:17 GMT

    he should have played much more international cricket for new zealand his first class record is brilliant nz cricket didn't utilize him well i still remember his one of the greatest catch in cricket of matthew hayden..

  • venkat on July 17, 2013, 11:13 GMT

    I was shocked at the dole thing. I thought @Paul Connell comment was a bad joke, until I read in an Associated Press article that Sinclair is really going on the dole. This is a very sad state of affairs for a recent ex-test cricketer who played 33 tests and 54 ODIs to be in such dire straits. I am all for more T20 leagues, at least then young players will take up cricket, pay bills, and hopefully some of them will be good test cricketers too. We hear about the big money in India and don't realize it can be this bad in some other places.

  • Rajagopalan on July 17, 2013, 10:00 GMT

    As for as my knowledge , he is the only batsman, scored double hundred(214 against west indies) on his test debut and golden duck(against Australia) on his one day debut.

    Good cricketer !!!

  • Dummy4 on July 17, 2013, 9:26 GMT

    A New Zealand's Hick. Potential without temperament!

  • Dummy4 on July 17, 2013, 7:07 GMT

    He will probably be best remembered for that catch against Australia at Docklands Stadium

  • Dummy4 on July 17, 2013, 4:14 GMT

    good player. Newzealand failed to utilize his talent..

  • William on July 17, 2013, 2:51 GMT

    He will be missed, his ability to kick on to big centuries is something the current blackcaps lack. Such as shame he had not had been able to carry his domestic form onto the international scene