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January 20, 2010
Karen Rolton, the former Australia captain, has announced her retirement from international cricket after a 14-year career. Rolton will leave the game having played a world-record 141 one-day internationals during which she scored 4814 runs, just 30 short of the leading mark set by her former team-mate Belinda Clark.
She also played 14 Tests, 15 Twenty20 internationals and played in two World Cup triumphs, in 1997 and 2005. Rolton was the Player of the Match in the 2005 final thanks to her 107 not out, which helped Australia to a 98-run win.
"I've been in good form in this year's WNCL competition, but with my ongoing knee problems it would be difficult to perform consistently at the high level needed to play for Australia in international cricket including the ICC World Twenty20," Rolton said. "I've thoroughly enjoyed representing Australia but I've decided the time is right to leave the international scene although I plan to still be available at the interstate level."
Rolton leaves the game with a formidable list of achievements. Along with England's Claire Taylor, she holds the record for the most ODI centuries, with eight, and her one-day international average of 48.14 is higher than any other woman to have played more than 35 matches.
Australia's captain from 2006 to 2009, Rolton led the team to 30 wins from 43 one-day internationals and only Clark skippered the side on more occasions. Although Rolton was a star left-hand top-order batsman, she was also an effective left-arm seamer before knee injuries restricted her ability to bowl and she finished as Australia's third-leading wicket-taker in ODIs, with 85 at 20.81.
In Test cricket, she retired as Australia's highest run scorer with 1002 and her unbeaten 209 at Leeds in 2001 was the highest Test score by an Australian. Rolton was also named the ICC's inaugural female player of the year in 2006 and was Australia's women's player of the year a record four times, in 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006.
"Karen Rolton set the standard in the women's game for more than a decade and retires as one of the legends of Australian cricket," Cricket Australia's chairman Jack Clarke said. "Her performances on the international stage can't be downplayed. For 14 years she dominated opposing teams in an unmatched era for Australian women's cricket."
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