England batsman Ian Bell has announced he would bring down curtains on his professional cricket career at the end of the ongoing season. The 38-year-old, who debuted for England in 2004, has played in 118 Tests, 161 ODIs and 8 T20Is.
Announcing his retirement, the right-handed batsman said that while his hunger for the game has not decreased, his body is struggling to keep up with the rigours of the game.
“It’s true when they say you know when the time’s right, and unfortunately, my time is now,” he said in a statement. “While my hunger and enthusiasm for the sport that I love remain as strong as ever, my body simply can’t keep up with the demands of the game to the standard of which I expect of myself.”
He was part of one of England’s most successful Test sides and helped his country win five Ashes. Ian Bell scored more than 7,000 runs in the longest format of the game with the help of 22 centuries and 46 fifties. He was one of England’s batting mainstays in the late 2000s and early 2010s. He is England’s third leading run-scorer in ODIs.
Ian Bell’s last appearance for his country came in 2015. Since then, he has been very active in domestic cricket, plying his trade for Warwickshire in county cricket. Few months ago, he had signed a new one-year contract which would have kept him at the country club till the conclusion of the 2021 season.
It’s true when they say you know when the time’s right, and unfortunately, my time is now.
It’s been a pleasure.
— Ian Bell (@Ian_Bell) September 5, 2020
Warwickshire’s sport director Paul Farbrace paid a glowing tribute to the retiring legend.
“Ian will retire from the game as a true Bears legend,” Farbrace said. “He’s come through our development system and academy, won every trophy possible, and he has broken club batting records.
“During his 12-year international career, he was also a fantastic ambassador for Warwickshire CCC who scored runs all over the world and was firmly established as one of the world’s best batsmen,” he added.
Ian Bell will play Warwickshire’s final Bob Willis Trophy fixture on Sunday, away at Glamorgan, before playing his final T20 game next week. He will be one of three Warwickshire players retiring this season, with Tim Ambrose and Jeetan Patel being the other two.