Shaun Udal announces his retirement
Sep 18 2007
Shaun Udal announces his retirement from Hampshire
Hampshire Cricket will seem strange next season without Shaun Udal, a popular, competitive and larger-than-life character who joined the staff back in 1987 and made his first-class debut as a 20-year-old two years later.
Now 38, the canny off-spinner from Cove, near Farnborough, played for the county in three Lord's finals, all ending in victory, and two years ago became the only Hampshire-born player to captain his home county in a one-day final at the famous old ground.
At the end of that memorable 2005 season Udal also became the first Hampshire-born Hampshire player to appear in Test cricket for England since 1896 and, at the time, only the third ever to do so.
That belated Test call-up--he played four matches in all--came 11 years after making the first of 11 appearances in one-day internationals.
Udal totalled 260 first-class matches in a long career and took 724 wickets, including 33 five-wicket hauls and 10 in a match four times. His best figures were 8-50 against Sussex at Southampton in 1992.
A hard-hitting lower middle-order batsman, he finished with 6761 runs, hitting 28 half-centuries. His only Hampshire hundred was an unbeaten 117 against Warwickshire at Southampton a decade ago.
In the one-day game, he took 418 wickets and scored 2556 runs.
Hampshire through and through, Shaun Udal was capped in 1992 and was awarded a richly-deserved benefit in 2002.
Shaun Udal’s Retirement Statement:
“After 21 fantastic seasons at the best cricket club in the world, I've decided with a heavy heart to retire. I have enjoyed every single moment of my time at Hampshire and feel very privileged to have played with and against, some of the great players. My favourite three over the years would have to be Shane Warne, Malcolm Marshall and Robin Smith. Everyone's time comes to an end at some stage and this way I am going out when I want to, and when people still remember me as being a decent player.
My favourite moment in the game was becoming the first Hampshire born captain to win a trophy for the Club and that eclipses everything else I've achieved, narrowly ahead of my 4-14 for England against India. I am proud to have taken more one-day wickets than anyone else who has ever played for the Club and together with over 700 first class wickets and 10,000 runs I feel very happy with my contribution over my twenty one seasons.
I will miss it enormously, especially my team mates and the dressing room fun but I'm going out with my head held high and I can now concentrate on being a proper dad to my three adorable children and a decent husband to my long suffering wife Emma.
Thank you to everyone for helping me enjoy my time in the game, especially my parents for starting me on the way. I will be around next season hosting the corporate boxes and hospitality and I’m looking forward to that. Hampshire cricket has been my life and I will miss it so much but the time has come to go and I look forward to the future. I would like to thank Hampshire’s fans for all their support during my career with the Club.”
Hampshire Officials paid tribute to Shaggy and on hearing confirmation this will be his final season with the Club.
Paul Terry Team Manager:
“Retiring is never an easy thing to do especially in a career so enjoyable as cricket. It’s a recurring nightmare to get the timing just right. Shaggy has announced his retirement at a great time when he is still showing supporters and team mates that he can perform at the highest level. He has had a wonderful career spanning 20 years with Hampshire and in that time has there been a player who has given as much of his soul to a Club? Yes he has been a pain in the neck in the dressing room with his school boy antics but he has ensured that there has never been a dull moment. As someone that was there at the beginning and now at the end of his playing career, I can only endorse the tributes that will understandably come in. He has been a wonderful committed and successful player for Hampshire with many highs. These have included Lord’s Finals and of course selection for England. Not bad 4-14 in your last game for England.
Shaggy, of course will still be around with the Club on match days. I fully expect to be updating him by text on the scores as we move from place to place. One of the greatest compliments I can pay him is that he is leaving behind a host of friends from a dressing room which will never quite be the same again. Good luck Shaggy.”
Tim Tremlett, Director of Cricket:
“I first remember coaching Shaun as a 12 year old in mid-winter at Basingstoke Sports Centre and he remains as enthusiastic and mischievous today as he was back then. Since making his debut in 1989 Shaun has played with passion, pride and all round he has been a magnificent cricketer for Hampshire Cricket.”
Rod Bransgrove, Hampshire Chairman:
“Shaun Udal has been a cornerstone of the Hampshire team for nearly 2 decades. During his long and distinguished career he has never wavered in his total commitment to this Club. Despite the long period between his original England selection and his Test call up only two summers ago, ‘Shaggy’ has never given anything less than 100% to his team both on and off the pitch.
I’m sure everybody connected with Hampshire Cricket, and it’s previous guise as Hampshire County Cricket Club, will want to thank Shaun for his outstanding contribution and wish him a long and happy retirement.”
Shaun Udal captained Hampshire to glory in the C&G Trophy in 2005