Ireland`s Botha bows out
Dublin: Ireland all-rounder Andre Botha has announced his retirement from international cricket on Thursday.
The 35-year-old South African-born player, qualified for Ireland on residency grounds, appeared in the past two World Cups and made 141 appearances for his adopted country.
But recent seasons had seen the left-hand bat and right arm medium-pacer, who took two for five in the shock 2007 World Cup win against Pakistan, struggling with injury.
"I have given this matter serious and long consideration, but ultimately have come to the conclusion that the time is right now," said Botha, who appeared in just two games at the recent World Cup in the subcontinent.
"I can assure you it`s a matter I haven`t taken lightly, but sometimes your body makes up your mind for you."
Botha took 42 wickets in as many one-day internationals and averaged just under 20 with the bat.
"Andre has been an integral part of this Irish team`s success since his debut way back in 2001," Ireland coach Phil Simmons said yesterday.
"He will be sorely missed, not only for his cleverly disguised slower balls or his trademark square cuts, but for his total dedication to the cause and the team," the former West Indies batsman added.
"His courage continuing to represent Ireland with the different injuries he`s endured over the last couple of years has been incredible, and shows just what a big heart he has."