14 Mar 2019

Cricket: Veteran Wellington allrounder calls time

4:21 pm on 14 March 2019

The Wellington allrounder and former Black Cap Luke Woodcock will retire from cricket at the end of the season.

His final game for Wellington will be against Canterbury at the Basin Reserve on Sunday.

Woodcock, 36, has played 17 seasons for Wellington making his debut in 2001 at the age of 19.

Luke Woodcock in T20 action for Wellington.

Luke Woodcock in T20 action for Wellington. Photo: Photosport

He's made 384 appearances for Wellington across all three formats scoring 10,594 runs and taking 339 wickets.

In November 2017 he made his 128th first-class appearance for Wellington breaking the record for the most first-class appearances for one team by any player in New Zealand.

He made his debut for the Black Caps in a T20 international against Pakistan in 2010 and went on to play four ODIs and three international T20s, earning selection in the 2011 World Cup squad.

He lifted the four-day State Championship in 2004, the Ford Trophy in 2014 and two T20 championships in 2015 and 2017.

"It just feels right at this stage to move on," he said.

"You always get told that you'll know when things are coming to an end and in all honesty, I never really believed that. But over the last six to nine months things have started to kick in around that final stage of my career and the decision not to play in the Ford Trophy this year was probably a sign it was time to call it a day."

"To reach 100 games in all three formats is pretty special and won't probably sink in until the season's done, but I'm really proud of being able to do that for Wellington," he said.

Luke Woodcock (left) and Jeetan Patel.

Luke Woodcock (left) and Jeetan Patel. Photo: Photosport

Fellow Wellington veteran Jeetan Patel acknowledged Woodcock's presence within the Firebirds environment.

"The one thing with Woody is he just wants to contribute, he really just wants to put something in for a team result.

"Woody's such a huge presence in our changing room, he connects really well with the younger guys and has a good connection with the older guys and I don't think you can ever fully replace a character like that.

"As a cricketer he's just been Luke Woodcock, he's never been anyone else but himself and that's quite special because he's always had the abilities he's got now, and he's just enhanced it as he's understood more and more about the game."