Hampshire batsman Simon Katich ends career in Australia

Simon Katich

Hampshire's Australian batsman Simon Katich has retired from first-class cricket in his homeland.

The 36-year-old had been plying his trade in the Sheffield Shield with New South Wales.

Katich's international career ended in some acrimony in 2011 when selectors opted not to renew his central contract despite his impressive form.

In an interview with BBC Solent in April Katich indicated he would like to extend his stay with Hants next year.

The left-hander has not yet confirmed whether he will continue playing first-class cricket in England at the end of his current deal.

Katich also has a Big Bash contract with Perth Scorchers and may also continue in the shorter format.

A statement released by Cricket Australia read: "Simon Katich wishes to advise that he has decided to retire from first-class cricket in Australia.

"The WACA and Cricket NSW have provided wonderful cricketing environments and amazing opportunities for Simon to play under great coaches, with terrific players and surrounded by dedicated support staff.

"He wishes to thank them all for the camaraderie and support over the last 16 years and for the chance to play in winning teams.

"With a young family and a desire for an extended time at home, Simon has decided it is time to reassess his priorities."

Katich has played 247 first-class matches, scoring 19,667 runs and 54 hundreds.

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