Story by Lawrence Trusida, Sports Editor
Zimbabwean batsman, Gary Ballance has retired from all forms of professional cricket with immediate effect.
The 33-year-old batsman has shocked the cricket world announcing his retirement barely six months after signing a two-year contract with Zimbabwe Cricket.
The left hander played 40 times for England, including 23 Tests between 2014 and 2017, and later six times for Zimbabwe the country of his birth.
Ballance announced in a statement by the Professional Cricketers Association that he had lost the love for the game.
“It is now time for me to move on to the next chapter of my life, I had hoped my move to Zimbabwe would provide me with a new-found happiness for the game and I will always be thankful to Zimbabwe Cricket for providing me with an opportunity to return to international cricket and welcoming me into their team,” he said.
“However, I have reached the stage where I no longer have the desire to dedicate myself to the rigours of professional sport and this would do Zimbabwe Cricket and the game itself a disservice, should I carry on. I wish them every success going forward,” he went on.
The former Yorkshire player became the second person to hit a Test century for two countries after making 137 not out for Zimbabwe against West Indies in February.
He scored 157 runs in five ODIs at an average of 39.25 for Zimbabwe earlier this year – his last international appearance coming in March.
His return to Zimbabwe to join the Chevrons setup had been seen as a major coup by ZC as he brought quality as well as bridging the age gap, but unfortunately that did not last.
Ballance declined to comment further, while Zimbabwe Cricket was not available for a comment.