Alex Blackwell: Australia vice-captain announces retirement

Alex Blackwell
Blackwell will continue to play for Sydney Thunder in the Women's Big Bash League

Alex Blackwell, Australia's most-capped female player, has retired from international and state cricket.

The 34-year-old batter made her Australia debut in 2003 and went on to play 251 matches across the Test, one-day and Twenty20 international formats.

She captained her country to victory at the Women's World T20 in 2010 and also won the competition in 2012 and 2014.

Blackwell scored 5,250 international runs and was also part of Australia's World Cup wins in 2005 and 2013.

More recently serving as national vice-captain, Blackwell - whose identical twin sister Kate also played for Australia between 2004 and 2008 - will continue to play for Sydney Thunder in the Women's Big Bash League.

"Alex has been a wonderful servant to Australian cricket, and a tremendous leader both at national and international level, and we congratulate her on an outstanding career that has spanned more than 16 years," said Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland.

"She was a talented cricketer - a fierce competitor, hard-working and far more often than not, a winner - Alex played an instrumental role in the dominance of both the Australian and New South Wales teams over the last decade."

Team-mates and opponents have joined the tributes on Twitter, with ex-England captain Charlotte Edwards saluting "a true great of the game and always the ultimate professional", and current skipper Heather Knight describing Blackwell as a "fierce competitor and the most annoying person to try and hit the ball past at extra cover".

Former Pakistan captain Sana Mir added: "You have been a brilliant leader for Australia as well as for other cricketers. Thank you for always being so helpful and forthcoming to young cricketers from all over the world who wanted guidance in cricket."

Australia's women travel to India next month for three one-day internationals., followed by a T20 tri-series also involving England.

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