Australia batsman Mike Hussey to retire from all forms of international cricket
Mike Hussey has announced that he is to retire from all forms of international cricket next month.
Last Updated: 30/12/12 6:46pm
His final Test match will be against Sri Lanka which starts in Sydney on January 3, and he will also be available for the five-match one-day series which ends 20 days later.
The 37-year-old, who first played for Australia in February 2004, has contested 78 Test matches, 185 ODIs and 38 T20s.
He has made 19 Test tons and scored over six thousand runs at an average of 51.52, while in one-day internationals he has pounded 5,442 runs at 48.15.
He will play out the remainder of the Australian summer, and will review his availability for the Western Warriors and Perth Scorchers at the end of the current season.
Hussey says he is quitting the international game for family reasons - he has four young children all aged under eight.
He told Channel Nine in Australia: "I was quite excited to tell them (my family) this morning, that I'm not going to go away and play for Australia anymore."
As for calling it a day with the national side, he added: "It's one thing about playing for Australia, there's always a lot of stress and pressure to perform.
"But I feel like I'm coming into this last Test match with no pressure whatsoever. I can really go out there and enjoy it.
"I know I am making the right decision. I think the clincher for me was when I started looking ahead towards the Indian and the Ashes series. I didn't have the excitement and buzz about facing the challenges of those two tours that I felt like I should have.
"For me, that meant that I was making the right decision. I think for two tough tours where you are away from home for a long time, you need to really be 100 per cent committed to the challenges that are going to be presenting everyone.
"It will be nice to be able to sit back when it's all finished and really reminisce over some fantastic memories and some great wins for Australia."
Cricket Australia chairman Wally Edwards said: "Michael's had a fine career - a great player, great team player and always been a great person, on and off the field.
"To debut as a Test cricketer at 30 and to go on and achieve what he has done has been absolutely terrific."
An official statement from Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said: "Michael Hussey has been a vital contributor to many Australian team wins over his very successful Test cricket career.
"Affectionately known as 'Mr Cricket', he has always been thoroughly committed to meticulous preparation and the highest levels of physical fitness which have in turn delivered consistent performances in all forms of the game.
"An incredibly reliable player and leader within the Australian cricket team, Michael will retire from Test cricket with a record that puts him amongst the very best Australian batsmen of all time.
"Beyond his contributions to team success, he will be remembered for the way he has carried himself on and off the field - and in doing so he has won the respect and admiration of players, officials and fans all around the world.
"In congratulating him on a great Test career, we wish him well and hope to see him stay close to the game after his playing days are over."