Fast bowler Brett Lee has announced his retirement from Twenty20 cricket, effective from the end of this year’s BBL campaign. Lee, 38, became a domestic T20 specialist after retiring from internationals in 2012 and he has played in the IPL and New Zealand’s HRV Cup, although since his last appearance for Kolkata Knight Riders in 2013 he has been solely a Sydney Sixers player.
So far this season he has taken nine wickets at 22.22 and an economy rate of 7.14, making him the leading wicket taker for the Sixers in the tournament. He has taken 105 wickets at 30.27 in 117 Twenty20 appearances in a career spanning nearly ten years in the format; his debut was in the inaugural T20 international between Australia and New Zealand in February 2005.
Lee’s retirement from T20s also brings an end to a career that began at the elite level nearly 20 years ago; he made his first-class debut in April 1995. The Sixers have only one regular match left in their campaign, against the Sydney Thunder on Thursday next week, but they also have a good chance to be part of the finals.
“I knew before the season started that this was going to be my last season,” Lee said. “I met with [coach] Trevor Bayliss and the talk was will I play for another two or three years, and I had that option, but I said to him straight away I want to make this my last year, I really want to enjoy this year.
“I think I’ve certainly had a lot more fun in the last six weeks than I ever have in my life. That’s because I haven’t put pressure on myself.
“Cricket has given me so many great memories, it has given me so many great opportunities. I’ve been lucky enough to play for 20 years, whereas most people might get a year or two. To play for two decades at the top level, really happy.”