South African fast bowler Wayne Parnell has signed up a Kolpak deal with Worcestershire to effectively end his International career with the Proteas.
The 29-year old, who last appeared in South African colours against Bangladesh in a Test match last year termed it the “toughest decision I’ve had to make in my career’
“This is probably the toughest decision I’ve had to make in my career. Of course, this wasn’t an overnight decision, it’s a very difficult decision and I am fully aware and understand the pros and cons of it”.
“I have always enjoyed playing for my country since making my debut. I’d like to thank everybody who has supported me through thick and thin, my family, my friends,” Parnell told ESPNCricinfo.
Parnell, who was a part of the South African U-19 side that reached the finals in the 2008 edition, has had a stop-start career for the national side. Injuries have played a constant part in his career thus far and encountered a major roadblock when he was ruled out due to a shoulder injury last January.
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Parnell’s injury coincided with his wife’s pregnancy and with little or no communication with Cricket South Africa, the reasons were enough for Parnell to ponder over his future
“The reality of life is that that goals and aspirations change all the time and it seems the Proteas have moved passed me since I’ve not really had any communications since I had my injury and then not going to India for the ‘A’ tours was also another indication”, he added.
“The goalposts for me have shifted. I’m comfortable and content with my decision and the people in my corner are all fully supportive of my decision. I can’t really predict what the future holds but I’m excited by it at the same time”.
Parnell joins a long list of South African cricketers like Rile Rossouw, Kyle Abbott, David Wiese and most recently Morne Morkel, who retired at the age of 34 after signing the Kolpak deal with Surrey.