Katherine Sciver-Brunt ends World Cup career after England’s semi-final exit

Katherine Sciver-Brunt ends World Cup career after England's semi-final exit
Katherine Sciver-Brunt ends World Cup career after England’s semi-final exit

Veteran seamer Katherine Sciver-Brunt has confirmed that England’s semi-final exit in Cape Town will be her last World Cup appearance.
Sciver-Brunt, who turns 38 in July, has not made any decision on her playing future beyond the current T20 World Cup, where hosts South Africa will take on defending champions Australia in the final on Sunday after a six-run victory over England in their semi-final. England are due to host Australia in the Women’s Ashes this summer.
Sciver-Brunt had retired from Test cricket before the multi-format series against South Africa in England last year, which kicked off with a Test at Taunton. The Ashes are also a multi-format event and she could conceivably play in the white-ball series, though she was only part of the T20I squad that toured the Caribbean in the lead-up to this World Cup.

“I’ve been thinking about retirement daily for two years,” Sciver-Brunt told the ICC in a press release issued on Saturday. “It used to be after every tour, I’d question what I was doing.

“But as it’s drawn closer, I’ve thought about it a bit more seriously and it does creep into your mind when you’re training, mainly because of the pressure other people put on you. You get all those comments and then you start to think, ‘Oh, am I slowing down? Should I stop? Am I embarrassing myself?’

“I’ve always said I would like to retire on top, where I’m still wanted, I’m still picked in the first XI, I’m not less than what I used to be. That’s how I’ve felt in the last six months, those things are starting to creep in where I can see somebody taking my role and doing it just as well. This is definitely the last World Cup and beyond this point, I’m fairly close to it all being along the same line, so it won’t be long.”

Sciver-Brunt came in for criticism during England’s semi-final defeat for berating younger team-mates for fielding errors. Sciver-Brunt claimed four wickets in five matches at the tournament, at an average of 30.75 and economy rate of 7.53. She leaked 19 runs in the final over of the group match against India, where her figures were 0 for 39 from three overs, and 18 off the final over as South Africa set a target of 165 on Friday, when she took 0 for 33 from four overs.

“Looking back on my career, I’d like to think I was Mrs. Consistent,” she said. “I’d like to be remembered as someone who was always at the top of my game and always contributing for my country, helping us in a winning cause and giving everything I had.

“The good thing is Nat can carry on my name, the legacy of Brunt will carry on, which is great. Having my name associated with hers is also great because she’s a bit of a legend in her own right now.”

Katherine told Sky Sports earlier this month that she planned to retire from cricket if England won the T20 World Cup but she would consider contesting the Ashes if they didn’t. And she has indicated that she is still coming to terms with the idea of not playing alongside Nat in England colours when that time does come.

“A lot of people say, ‘how does she put up with you?’ She has patience in abundance and empathy and she understands me and loves me for who I am,” Katherine said. “We just work really well together and complement each other, and there is never a day where we want to be apart.

“Coming into my retirement, she will be gone, but hopefully the ECB will take me along. I’ll be slinging in the nets to all of them.”

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