Batting allrounder Luke Wright has quit first-class cricket to sign a white-ball contract extension with Sussex, the club confirmed on Monday (April 8). The right-hander, who also bowls medium pace, made his first-class debut in 2003 against Leicestershire and went onto play 143 more games to finish with more than 7000 runs that includes 17 centuries at an average of 38. With the ball, he picked up 120 wickets including three five-wicket hauls, reports Cricbuzz.
“I’m hugely proud of my first-class record - it’s something that has often surprised people who think of me as having been a white-ball specialist - and I was lucky to join Sussex under Peter Moores and Chris Adams ahead of a period of unprecedented success for the county,” Wright said. “I’ll miss first-class cricket greatly and would always advise any youngsters making their way in the game that four-day runs are always the most rewarding.”Wright was not considered for selection in Sussex’s opening game of the county season and that played a role on his decision, according to his own admission. “I worked hard on my red-ball cricket over the winter, but once it became clear that I was going to have a lesser role in the four-day team, it made sense for me to commit my long-term future to the white-ball game only,” he noted. “I’m hoping to carry on playing for the next five to six years and therefore I’m delighted to be committing my future to Sussex with this contract.”
Wright, who was a part of the Championship winning sides in 2006 and 2007, will now be available to play in the Royal London One-Day Cup and the T20 Vitality Blast campaign, where he leads Sussex. “I’m delighted that we’ll be benefitting from Luke’s skills and leadership in the shorter forms of the games for the years to come,” head coach Jason Gillespie said. “He’s in great shape and I’m sure he’ll be playing for a long time yet.
“I sat down with Wrighty at the end of last season and he was keen to work over the winter to try and cement his role in the four-day side. He missed out on selection for the first game with a couple of the other lads given an opportunity and he has been very selfless in making way for other players to come through. Luke’s been brilliant for Sussex in first-class cricket for many years and his record reflects what he has achieved in that form of the game.”