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Ballance retires from all forms of professional cricket

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Last updated on 19 Apr 2023 | 04:46 PM
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Ballance retires from all forms of professional cricket

The left-hander scored an unbeaten 137 in his only Test appearance for Zimbabwe in February -- adding to the four Test hundreds made with England

Gary Ballance, who recently moved back to his country of birth Zimbabwe to resume his international career and even scored a century against Windies in Zimbabwean colours, has suddenly announced his retirement from all forms of professional cricket.

33-year-old Ballance played 23 Tests and 16 one-day internationals for England but found himself out of favour for the last six years due to bad form and then his struggle with mental health kept him out of the national set-up. 

Following which he found himself embroiled in the Yorkshire racism scandal, which led to him apologising last year to Pakistan-born Azeem Rafiq for "racist" language he had used towards his former team-mate at the county club.

Ballance left Yorkshire last year and signed a two-year deal with his native country, but his return to top-flight cricket was a brief one and he has now quit with immediate effect.

"After much thought, I have decided to retire from all forms of professional cricket with immediate effect," he said in a statement issued via the Professional Cricketers' Association.

"I had hoped my move to Zimbabwe would provide me with a new-found happiness for the game and I will always be thankful to Zimbabwe Cricket for providing me with an opportunity to return to international cricket and welcoming me into their team.

"However, I have reached the stage where I no longer have the desire to dedicate myself to the rigours of professional sport and this would do Zimbabwe Cricket and the game itself a disservice, should I carry on. I wish them every success going forward."

The left-hander scored an unbeaten 137 in his only Test appearance for Zimbabwe in February -- adding to the four Test hundreds made with England -- and also featured in five ODIs and one Twenty20 match for the African nation.

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