10 May 2007

England Vice-Captain Laura Newton retires

The English women's cricket team has lost it's vice-captain to retirement - another player struggling to mix the huge demands of international cricket without any money as recompense . Laura Newton is only 29 but the demands of international cricket don't balance with the rewards for her any more. “It has been an extremely difficult decision for me to make but the demands of being an England cricketer require a sacrifice I am no longer able to undertake from this point onwards. Playing cricket for England has given me wonderful experiences, opportunities and memories that I will treasure for the rest of my life," Newton said.

Newton opened the batting for England having originally started as a middle order batsman and captained the Super 4s team, as well as vice-captaining with both Lancashire and England. She made her test debut in 1999 against India and since then has become a regular in the Test and ODI sides, despite a relatively low average of 20.

She contributed a lot in the field as well as with her bowling where she started out as a medium pacer but recently converted to bowling off-spin, bowling very effectively in the most-recent series in India.

England will announce a new vice-captain in due course, but the loss of an experienced player will be of great concern to England skipper Charlotte Edwards as she faces the prospect of leading an inexperienced side to Australia for the Ashes series next year.

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