While it is champagne time for the Aussies, with the bubbly flowing freely after their win over the Kiwis in the World Cup, it was revealed that skipper Michael Clarke woke up wife Kyly in wee hours on Friday to break the news to her about his decision to retire from one-day cricket after the World Cup final.
Michael Clarke with wife Kyly
Earlier, Clarke (33) had claimed that he could play on till 2019 but, post the semi-final against India on Thursday, realisation dawned like the early morning sun and he thought it was impossible for him to continue, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Clarke will continue to play Test matches. It is now Steve Smith, having already deputised for Clarke this summer in the Border-Gavaskar series, who is tipped to become the full-time leader in the 50-over game, a game that the Aussies dominated so comprehensively through this World Cup.
Clarke broke the news of his retirement to Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland and selectors on the weekend and told his team later.
He is quoted as saying, “I don’t think it’s realistic that I’ll be there, be fit and healthy and available to play the next World Cup, so I believe it’s the right time,” said Clarke.
Leaving on a high
“I think I leave the game, the one-day game for the Australian team in a better place than when I took over the captaincy, and I think the last World Cup we were knocked out in the quarter-final.
“I’m hopeful that it’ll prolong my Test career, as well, and that’s obviously a priority for me,” he said.
Clarke yesterday became the third Australian captain after Allan Border, Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting to lay his hands on the World Cup. Border’s team beat England in the 1987 final while Waugh’s Aussies demolished Pakistan in 1999. Ponting’s side beat India and Sri Lanka in 2003 and 2007 respectively.