Watson says farewell to Big Bash League

26 April 2019

Sydney Thunder’s all-time leading run-scorer retires from professional T20 cricket in Australia after decorated career

The KFC Big Bash League has lost one of its biggest stars with Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson announcing his retirement from the Twenty20 competition.

Watson, who's still playing in the Indian Premier League and is one of the most sought-after guns for hire on the T20 circuit, has confirmed he won't return for a fifth BBL campaign with the Thunder.

The allrounder, having recently smacked 96 for Chennai Super Kings and one of two players to smash a century during the previous BBL season, is keen to spend more time with his young family.

The 37-year-old will continue to play grade cricket in Sydney plus other T20 tournaments around the world.

The decision comes as BBL clubs finalise their rosters for next season, with a number of high-profile internationals linked to the competition.

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The Thunder and other clubs have started talks with South African legend AB de Villiers, who had snubbed the previous edition of the BBL to play in Bangladesh's domestic T20 competition.

The West Australian has reported the Perth Scorchers are negotiating with South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis.

The fact that Australia will host the T20 World Cup in 2020 might prompt more internationals to sign up for the next BBL season.

Watson was arguably the highest-profile Australian player available for the entire 2018-19 BBL season, with Aaron Finch and Glenn Maxwell missing games because of national duty.

The two-time Allan Border medallist was a household name during his international career that spanned 59 Tests, 190 ODIs and 58 T20s.

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"I want to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart who has been involved with the Sydney Thunder over the last four seasons," Watson said.

"I have so many amazing memories that I will savour forever."

Filed Under

Sydney Thunder Men

Shane Watson