England batsman Ian Bell has announced his retirement from One Day Internationals to concentrate on Test cricket. Bell, who is England’s record ODI run-scorer, with 5,416 runs in 161 matches, says he still has the “hunger and desire” to play the longest format of the game. (Click here for latest cricket stories)
“I’ve decided now is the right time to officially stand down from international one-day cricket and put all my focus and attention on my Test career,” Bell wrote in his column in Metro newspaper.
Bell insisted he is determined to carry on in Test cricket following talks with coach Trevor Bayliss and captain Alastair Cook.
“I spoke with Trevor Bayliss, Paul Farbrace and Alastair Cook in the aftermath of the Oval Test. We had a really good talk and I was as honest as I could be. Deep down though, I think I probably knew I wasn’t ready to call time on my England Test career. I still have that hunger and desire. The day you don’t, is the day you step away,” Bell wrote.
Bell, who is one of the most experienced members in the side, has played 115 Tests and averages 43 with 22 centuries and 45 fifties. However, the 33-year-old batsman has endured a difficult year, averaging 24.29 with one hundred. In fact, he has not featured in the national team’s ODI outings since the World Cup Down Under earlier this year.