England wicketkeeper Sarah Taylor has decided to retire from international cricket on health grounds due to an anxiety condition.
The 30-year-old made her England debut in 2006, and has gone on to make 226 appearances, earning a reputation as one of the world’s finest players.
Across that time she has scored 6,533 international runs, placing her second on England Women’s all-time list of run-scorers.
In addition, she was known for her work behind the stumps. Nobody in the history of the women’s game has effected more dismissals across all three formats than Taylor (232).
In 2015, Taylor made history by becoming the first woman to play Australian first-grade cricket but the following year she announced she would take an indefinite break from cricket after suffering panic attacks.
A year later she was integrated back into the squad and went on to play a further 25 ODIs but missed the ICC World T20 in the West Indies in 2018 as part of the process of managing her anxiety condition.
At the start of 2019, Taylor embarked on her first away tour for England in 16 months but struggled with the bat against India and, although she hit 70 against West Indies at Chelmsford in June, she subsequently suffered a difficult Ashes campaign, scoring six runs in three matches.
In 2006 my dream came true and I beam with pride at what I've achieved over the years, alongside the best players and people. It is the right time for me and my health to retire, but I have loved every minute in an England shirt. Thank you to everyone for supporting me ❤️ pic.twitter.com/8MdTqpgmWe
— Sarah Taylor (@Sarah_Taylor30) September 27, 2019
Reflecting on her decision, Taylor said: “This has been a tough decision but I know it’s the right one, for me and for my health moving forward. I can’t thank my team-mates enough, both past and present, and the ECB for being supporters and friends along my journey.
“Playing for England and getting to wear the shirt for so long has been a dream come true and I have been blessed with so many great moments throughout my career. From making my debut in 2006, to Ashes wins, and of course the World Cup final at Lord’s, to name just a few.
“I’ve also been blessed with travelling the world and making lifelong friends along the way.
“To be right in the thick of women’s cricket as it’s gone from strength to strength – not only in England, but across the world – has been an amazing experience, and I can look back on what women’s cricket has achieved with great pride at playing some small part in it.
“The England girls are role models on and off the field, and they have undoubtedly inspired – and will continue to inspire – so many young people to take up the game, girls and boys. I can’t wait to see the heights that this team can reach.
“I am extremely proud of my career. I leave with my head held high and with excitement for what my future holds and what my next chapter brings.”
Clare Connor, managing director of Women’s Cricket, added: “Sarah can be immensely proud of everything she has achieved in an England shirt, and of everything she has done for the women’s game.