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Luke Wright announces first-class retirement, extends white-ball contract

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

Luke Wright, the former England all-rounder, has called time on his first-class career, and penned a white-ball only extension to his contract with Sussex.

Wright, who led Sussex in 2015 and 2017,  has played 144 first-class games in all, scoring 7,622 runs at 38.11, including 17 centuries and 38 half-centuries. He brought up a career-best 226* against Worcestershire in the 2015 County Championship, and also has 120 wickets, including three five-wicket hauls.

“I’m hugely proud of my first-class record – it’s something that has often surprised people who think of me as having been a white-ball specialist,” said Wright. “I was lucky to join Sussex under Peter Moores and Chris Adams ahead of a period of unprecedented success for the county.

“I’ll miss first-class cricket greatly and would always advise any youngsters making their way in the game that four-day runs are always the most rewarding.”

The all-rounder, who played 50 ODIs and 51 T20Is for England, made his first-class debut for his native Leicestershire in 2003 against Sussex, and proceeded to join them in 2004. Coincidentally, he played his last first-class game against Leicestershire, in September last year.

He was part of the Sussex side that lifted the 2006 and 2007 Championship trophies, along with four limited-overs titles.

"We're just delighted he's able to stay with us longer in the shorter forms of the game"

“We’re just delighted he’s able to stay with us longer in the shorter forms of the game”

Wright will continue to lead Sussex in the T20 Blast, and will also be available for the One-Day competition.

Wright wasn’t included in the squad for the first game of the 2019 county season, against Leicestershire, and after he realised his time in the XI would be limited, Wright decided to focus on the shorter formats.

However, Jason Gillespie, the Sussex coach, said that was purely Wright’s decision. “The door has never been closed,” Gillespie told BBC Sussex. “We made that very clear with Luke. This is his decision and we’re just delighted he’s able to stay with us longer in the shorter forms of the game.

Wright will continue to lead Sussex Sharks in the T20 tournament

Wright will continue to lead Sussex Sharks in the T20s

“It’s a sad day because he’s played some wonderful cricket for Sussex but it’s his decision and we’re all fully supportive.”

“He’ll be in and around the squad a lot, talking to the lads – he’s captain of our T20 side so that’s not going to change.”

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