Aaron Finch bombshell leaves cricket fans heartbroken: 'Sad to see'

Aaron Finch looks on as the national anthem is played prior to a match for Australia.
Aaron Finch has announced his retirement from one-day cricket, after 146 matches, 54 as captain of Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

Aaron Finch has announced his retirement from one-day cricket, putting an end to speculation about the Australia captain's future after a series poor performances.

The surprise announcement was made on Saturday morning, following Australia's win over New Zealand to seal their series victory on Thursday.

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Finch, who will be 36 in November, will retire from ODIs but still plans to play for Australia in the upcoming T20 World Cup.

Sunday's third ODI against New Zealand will be his farewell to the one-day format.

The opening batsman and ODI skipper had set a goal of once again captaining Australia at the 2023 World Cup, but said on Saturday that now was the time for new leadership.

Under pressure after failing to fire for much of 2022, Finch's decision could potentially have pre-empted him losing his place in the side, having had scores of 0, 5, 5, 1, 15, 0 and 0 across his previous seven innings.

Finch didn't play any ODIs in 2021 after copping a knee injury while playing against the West Indies, and returned to the side this year only to score 169 runs at an average of 13, with five ducks.

The veteran star who was crucial to Australia's win at the 2015 Cricket World Cup leaves the ODI world having scored the fourth-most hundreds for the green and gold, behind only Ricky Ponting, David Warner and Mark Waugh.

Aaron Finch, pictured here with wife Amy and daughter Esther.
Aaron Finch with wife Amy and daughter Esther. (Photo by Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)

He said he was incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to captain Australia for so long.

"It has been a fantastic ride with some incredible memories," Finch said.

"I have been extremely fortunate to be a part of some brilliant one-day sides. Equally, I have been blessed by all those I have played with and the many people behind the scenes.

"I thank all of those who have helped and supported my journey to this point."

Finch made his ODI debut in 2013 alonside fellow first-gamers Usman Khawaja and Phil Hughes, eventually becoming a World Cup champion two years later.

On social media, fans paid tribute to the long-time skipper.

Cricket Australia, fans pay tribute to Aaron Finch after retirement call

Finch's last ODI century came against India in November of 2020, a few months after helping Australia to the semi-final of the 2019 World Cup.

Cricket Australia boss Nick Hockley said Finch would leave a great legacy for Australian cricket, having guided the team through his fair share of ups and downs.

"On behalf of Australian Cricket, I would like to congratulate Aaron on his vast contribution as captain of the Australian men's ODI team and as a wonderful exponent of the 50-over format," Hockley said via a statement.

"Aaron is an enormously gifted and determined player whose outstanding deeds with the bat have been matched by his strong and inspiring leadership.

Aaron Finch walks off the ground after losing his wicket against Zimbabwe.
After battling for form in 2022, Aaron Finch has announced he is retiring from one-day cricket. (Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

"His decision to step aside from the ODI captaincy now is typical of his selfless approach to the game.

"I'm delighted that Aaron will lead the Australian team into the forthcoming ICC Men's T20 World Cup where his leadership, experience and tactical nous will be integral to the defence of our T20 World Cup title on home soil."

Finch will retire having played 146 ODIs for Australia, captain in 54 of those.

One of the most damaging opening batters in the world when at his best, he has made over 5000 runs in the format and averaged close to 40.

Finch's decision leaves Australia searching for a new one-day captain ahead of next year's World Cup, with Test skipper Pat Cummins previously indicating he does not want to lead the side.

With AAP

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