BLACKCAP Chris Cairns has announced that he is retiring from international cricket following the Twenty20 match against the West Indies at Eden Park on February 16.
“I feel that the time is right for me to retire from international cricket. I still enjoy playing for the BLACKCAPS and want to leave at a time when that enjoyment has not diminished and when I feel that I am still performing at the top level and contributing to the success of the team.
“I now have other commitments in my life and want to focus on family and business.
“I am looking forward to the Twenty20 match, which I believe will be a great way to finish my international career at home in front of a New Zealand audience.
“It is also important to retire at a time which allows NZC to develop other options well ahead of the World Cup.
“The BLACKCAPS have evolved into a world class team. They are a wonderful group of players and I believe they have every opportunity of success.”
Cairns will complete the season for the State Canterbury Wizards and will play league cricket in England this year while concentrating on business opportunities.
New Zealand Cricket Chief Executive Martin Snedden said that Cairns’ retirement will close a great chapter in New Zealand cricket history.
“Chris has had an outstanding international cricket career. He has brought passion, flare and commitment to the game and will be remembered as one of New Zealand’s greatest all rounders.
“Chris has obviously spent time considering this decision and NZC is supportive of it.”
BLACKCAPS coach John Bracewell said Chris will be missed from the BLACKCAPS unit.
“He is very much the elder statesman within the team and plays an important role in mentoring players.
“He has shown great commitment in returning to full fitness this season and I believe that he had the ability to push towards the World Cup, if that is what he desired.”