Image: England’s Ian Bell celebrates winning the Ashes with the urnReuters / Philip BrownLivepic
LONDON (Reuters) – England batsman Ian Bell is retiring from one-day internationals to concentrate on prolonging his test career, the 33-year-old said on Friday.
Bell, who has scored an England record 5,416 runs in 161 one-dayers, was left out of the squad for the five-match series against Australia starting next week.
He helped his team win this year’s Ashes, a record-equalling fifth test series victory for him over the Australians, but averaged only 26.87 with the bat.
“Deep down I probably knew I wasn’t ready to call time on my test career,” Bell wrote in the Metro newspaper.
Bell has scored 7,569 runs in 115 tests at an average of 43, including 22 centuries.
“I’ve a huge amount still to give in the test arena and still have so many ambitions left to achieve, both from a personal and a team perspective,” he said.
“I would love nothing more than to go to Australia in two years’ time and right the wrongs of our last Ashes tour there,” the right-hander added in reference to the 5-0 whitewash last year.
“I’m not afraid of being dropped. I’m looking forward to challenging myself and putting myself into difficult situations against the best players in the world.”
(Reporting by Ed Osmond; Editing by Tony Jimenez)
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