Ed Joyce has announced his retirement from playing all forms of international and domestic cricket. He will take up a new role overseeing leadership development and as a batting coach in the Irish performance system.
The 39-year old record-holding batsman who debuted for his country in 1997 believes that it is time to pass the baton on to the next generation – and will be integral in building such a legacy within the player development pathway in Ireland.
“I feel now is the right time to stop playing and get started on a new chapter. The recent Test match against Pakistan was such an incredible few days and was the perfect game for me to say was my last in professional cricket,” said Joyce.
“I am very grateful to Cricket Ireland for giving me the opportunity to get involved in the coaching set up. I know I have a huge amount to learn about the art of coaching, but I know I also have a huge amount of knowledge that I’m determined to pass on to the next generation of Irish talent.”
After appearing 50 times for Ireland between 1997 and 2005, Joyce decided to try and play for England in 2006 in a bid to play Test match cricket, which had always been his dream. During this time he played 17 ODIs and 2 T20Is, which included scoring a match-winning century against Australia in 2007.
In 2011 Joyce was welcomed back into the Irish fold and was part of the Ireland Cricket World Cup team that went down in Irish sporting folklore for their win over England in Bangalore.
He went on to play over 100 more matches for Ireland, and in 2015 he hit the first double- century by an Irishman on home soil when he registered 231 runs against the UAE at Malahide.
Joyce also enjoyed a highly successful 16-year county cricket playing career at Middlesex and Sussex – captaining both sides to various county titles.
“County Cricket has been such a huge part of my life for the last 16 years and I firmly believe there was no better place for me to learn about the game. I was lucky to have played for two of the best in Middlesex and Sussex and I cherish the friendships I made and trophies I won over this period,” he said.
I would like to thank him for everything he has ever done for me and Cricket Ireland
“One of the challenges Irish cricket faces now is that we can no longer use county cricket as a finishing school for our youngsters. We need to produce our own cricketers through our domestic structure and I’m excited to be a part of that journey.”
William Porterfield, Ireland men’s captain and long-term teammate, marked the announcement of Joyce’s retirement with a reflection of Joyce’s personal impact and the immense value and experience he brought to the Irish dressing room:
“It is pretty hard to sum up in just a few words how much of an impact Ed has had on Irish cricket and how much of an all-round great person he is. He is the person, from my era, that showed that being a professional cricketer was a tangible dream across the water. He inspired a whole generation to show that it is possible,” said Porterfield.
“He is someone that I have always looked up to and to have had the opportunity to play with him for the past few years has been an absolute privilege. He will be a great miss in the changing rooms, not only for his runs, but the person he is. A lot of us, not least the young lads, have learned so much from him.”
“He has had such an amazing career that he can be so proud of over the past 20 or so years. For it to culminate in taking the field for Ireland’s first ever Test match was the icing on the cake, I’m sure. He has seen the transition from a completely amateur organisation into being a full member and professional.”
“I would like to thank him for everything he has ever done for me and Cricket Ireland. I wish him all the best in his next chapter and I’m sure I will look to draw on his knowledge as we continue to move forward.
Graham Ford, head coach of the Ireland men’s team since December 2017, said:
“It is always a sad occasion when a top-quality cricketer calls time on his career. Ed’s brilliant performance statistics show clearly what an outstanding player he has been.”
“Over the years cricketing fans have greatly enjoyed watching many a fine performance from Ed. Sadly his batting qualities will no longer be available to our National team. As the national team coach it is however very comforting to know that Ed’s vast cricketing knowledge and experience will still be a part of our system and will play a vital role in developing future Irish cricketing stars.”