Josh Poysden retires aged 29 after limited Yorkshire opportunities
England Lions legspinner struggled to nail down first-team place at Warwickshire or Yorkshire
Josh Poysden, the Yorkshire legspinner, has announced his retirement from professional cricket with immediate effect after making a single first-team appearance this summer.
Poysden, 29, won two caps for the England Lions in 2017 and was selected for the North vs South series in the same year, but as with many English legspinners, found it hard to nail down a regular spot in a county team. At Warwickshire he was primarily used as a limited-overs bowler, with Jeetan Patel ahead of him in the Championship side, while opportunities were hard to come by in all formats at Yorkshire.
Poysden's route into the game was unusual. He played club cricket as a wicketkeeper growing up but took up legspin after watching Mushtaq Ahmed play for Sussex, though struggled for opportunities at the club with Will Beer established on their staff. He represented Cambridge MCCU while studying at Anglia Ruskin University, won selection for the Unicorns in the 2013 YB40, and performed well enough for Warwickshire to take a punt on him.
His early performances were promising, especially in white-ball cricket, but he struggled for game time and opted to go on loan to Yorkshire for the final two months of the 2018 season. He signed a permanent deal with them but played only nine games the following summer after suffering a fractured skull when he was struck on the side of the head while giving throw-downs to Dom Bess.
Poysden made only four first-team appearances in 2020 after he was ruled out of the end of the T20 Blast's group stages as a close contact of David Willey, who had tested positive for Covid-19. This year, his only appearance was in a Blast match reduced to seven overs a side against Nottinghamshire, in which Alex Hales hit three of the four balls he bowled for six.
"It's been an absolute honour to be a professional cricketer," Poysden said. "I didn't have the most straightforward journey into the game, coming through club and university cricket, so to go on and represent two of the biggest counties, Warwickshire and Yorkshire, over the past eight years has been an amazing journey.
"There's a lot I've achieved that I'm very proud of, but I am most grateful for what the game has given me. It has taught me so much, given me some special memories, but most importantly I've met some brilliant people who I know I will call friends for life.
"It wasn't an easy decision to retire, but something that I'd been considering for a while, and I feel now is the right time to move on. I'm excited to get stuck in to the next chapter, and to pursue something away from playing cricket."
Poysden retires with 33 first-class wickets, 30 List A wickets and 26 T20 wickets to his name.