Central Districts today announced that the veteran has retired from all forms of the game in the following press release
Central Districts’ batsman Mathew Sinclair has announced his retirement from all cricket after an outstanding 18 year career.
Sinclair’s First Class debut in 1995/96 for the Central Stags gave little indication of the career that would follow. Playing against Canterbury, Sinclair was dismissed for a first ball duck in his only innings against Canterbury at Lancaster Park. He rebounded from that early setback though, going on to establish one of the most outstanding domestic records in New Zealand history.
Tied fourth on the list of most First-Class appearances for a New Zealand Association (119), Sinclair has broken a number of records over the course of his career.
• Leading run-scorer in all formats for Central Districts, with over 15000 runs in all formats
• Most First Class runs for one association with 9148 – more than 2500 runs in front of second
• A record 27 First Class centuries for Central Districts
At the age of 37 Sinclair has decided it’s time to look for a new challenge.
“Having taken a few months since the end of last season to consider my options I have decided that the timing is right to call time on my playing career,” Sinclair said.
“I have two young children and a wife who I want to spend more time with and the constant travel that the Stags endure each year makes that pretty tough.
“I am also at the stage where I want to get into a career outside of cricket and unless you are in a position to totally devote yourself, it’s difficult to get the opportunities that I am after.
“There are some really talented younger batsmen coming through for CD, so I feel it’s the right time from the team’s perspective as well. “
Sinclair walks away having won eight domestic trophies and is proud to have been able to play for the one association.
“Central Districts has been good to me and I never really considered playing for anyone else,” Sinclair said.
“We have always played a positive style of game, and the quality of the people in the side meant that there was always a great team spirit.
“My first hundred for the Stags was really special as it helped win a game and proved that I could succeed at that level.
“Watching Peter Ingram beat my record for the highest individual score for the Stags, Jamie How’s double hundred in a one day game and Michael Mason’s heroics with the bat to win the Ford Trophy two seasons ago are special moments that I will also cherish.”
Central Districts Chief Executive Hugh Henderson was full of praise for Sinclair and said he would be impossible to replace.
“It’s hard to put into words the contribution that Mathew has made to Central Districts,” said Henderson.
“In years to come his run scoring records will still stand and people will look back at him as an all-time great of the domestic game in this country.
“It is remarkable that in a career of such length that Mathew never really had a poor season, he just kept scoring runs. It’s unlikely there will be another player like him in our history.
“On behalf of Central Districts we would like to thank him wholeheartedly for his contribution to the game and our association. We wish him all the best in the next stages of his career outside of cricket.”
Sinclair was also in and out of the BLACKCAPS side, appearing in 33 Tests, 54 One Day Internationals and two Twenty20 Internationals. Despite never cementing a spot in the team, he is one of only three New Zealand players to have scored two double centuries.
“While it would have been nice to have played more for my country, I do look back on my time in the BLACKCAPS with a lot of pride and satisfaction,” Sinclair said.
“Getting 214 on debut against the West Indies was a real highlight; especially as we went on to win the test.”
New Zealand Cricket Chief Executive David White also paid tribute to Sinclair; “Mathew has been an outstanding performer for Central Districts for nearly two decades.
“His contribution to the game throughout his career has been immense and on behalf of everyone at New Zealand Cricket I would like to wish him all the best in his retirement.”
A farewell game for Sinclair will be played in Napier at the beginning of the season where the public will have the opportunity to farewell him from the game as well as seeing some present and past players that have played with and against him. Dates and details will be provided in due course.