17 Nov 2015

Johnson pulls stumps on cricket career

2:34 pm on 17 November 2015

The Australian fast bowler Mitchell Johnson will retire from all forms of international cricket at the conclusion of the second test against New Zealand at the WACA in Perth today.

The announcement was made by Cricket Australia before the start of the fifth and final day of the match.

Speculation had mounted since the pace bowler's statement last week that he pondered retirement "most days".

Last month the 34-year-old Johnson said that he had weighed up retirement after Australia's last Ashes series in the northern summer, where he had taken 15 wickets at an average of 34.93.

From Townsville in north Queensland, Johnson made his test debut for Australia in 2007, in a two-match series against Sri Lanka.

At his best, Johnson's left-arm pace deliveries - in particular his sharp bouncers - proved all but unplayable for opposing batsmen.

Australian pace bowler Mitchell Johnson is retiring from all cricket at the end of second test against New Zealand.

Australian pace bowler Mitchell Johnson is retiring from all cricket at the end of second test against New Zealand. Photo: Photosport

"I feel now is the best time to say goodbye," Johnson said.

"I have been lucky enough to have had a wonderful career and enjoyed every moment of playing for my country. It's been an incredible ride," he said.

"I've given the decision a lot of thought. Beyond this match, I'm just not sure that I can continue competing consistently at the level required to wear the Baggy Green."

"My career has certainly had its up and downs but I can honestly say I have given it my all and am proud of everything I have achieved. To win an Ashes Series and a Cricket World Cup is something I will treasure forever.

Against England and South Africa in successive series in 2013-14, he had combined figures of 59 wickets at an average of 15.23.

He had match figures of 4 for 163 in Australia's first Test win over New Zealand at the Gabba.

In Perth, Johnson finished with relatively poor figures of 1 for 128 in New Zealand's first-innings of 624, but his dismissal of Doug Bracewell made him Australia's fourth-highest Test wicket-taker with 311.

He is playing his 73rd Test, and could add to his career wicket haul if New Zealand bats at some point on the final day at the WACA.

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