Fleming calls it a day
Stephen Fleming has confirmed he will retire from international cricket at the end of the Test series with England.
Last Updated: 14/02/08 9:43am
Former New Zealand skipper Stephen Fleming has confirmed his decision to retire from international cricket at the end of the Test series with England next month.
34-year-old Fleming is his country's most-capped Test player with 108 appearances, and also has a record number of games, and wins, as Black Caps captain.
Fleming had originally planned to call it a day after the tour of England next summer, but he has decided that now is the time to end his international career.
"I always indicated that I was likely to retire from international cricket as some point in the near future and the time is right for me and my family to do that now," said Fleming.
"Retiring before the tour to England will allow me to be with Kelly for the birth of our second child and I'm excited about pursuing new business opportunities."
Fleming had played in county cricket with Middlesex, Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire, who he captained to the County Championship title.
Although he will not be returning to county cricket, Fleming will be playing again after his international retirement.
He has signed up for the Indian Premier League, and may also play first class cricket for Wellington to keep himself match sharp for that.
"The IPL only takes a short amount of my time each year and allows me to continue pursuing my new endeavours outside of the game," he added.
Fleming has scored 6,875 Test runs at an average of 39.73, which includes nine centuries, he captained his country for 80 Tests and 218 one-day internationals and his 166 Test catches are the most by a New Zealand player.
The record-breaking New Zealander is his country's most successful captain, skippering the side for more than a decade and leading them to Test series wins over India, England, West Indies, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe.
Fleming also led the Black Caps to victory in the 2000 Champions Trophy in Kenya and to the World Cup semi-finals in 1999 and 2007.
Widely regarded as one of the best captains around, Fleming said that he would like to be remembered for his leadership skills.
"I probably got more joy out of my captaincy than my batting," he said.
"I'd like to be remembered as someone who got the best out of a team that was perhaps challenged at times because of resources but still managed to punch above their weight."