Damien Martyn breaks silence on retirement

Published: Monday, January 22, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Perth:Former Australian batsman Damien Martyn has moved on from Test cricket, but says the decision not to inform captain Ricky Ponting of his impending retirement is one he will always regret.

Martyn finally broke his silence on his controversial and sudden retirement from international cricket in December here Tuesday in an exclusive interview aired on local television Monday.

The 35-year-old shocked the cricket world when he announced his retirement the day the team for the third Test against England, which Australia duly won to regain the Ashes, was announced.

In explaining his decision not to tell his teammates before making the announcement, Martyn said he knew he had to make a clean break and that they would have tried to talk him into seeing out the series.

He said the decision not to tell Ponting was one he had been grappling with.

"That's always going to be something I have to live with," he said.

"Look he's disappointed and rightly so, but to look him in the eye, I would have broke down, I would have been in tears and I don't think I could have said what I wanted to say."

Martyn went to ground after making the announcement and wasn't seen in public for three weeks.

His only initial communication with former teammates was by text message.

Martyn said the reason he kept his decision from his teammates was because he knew they would try to change his mind.

"And I love them for that because they wanted to keep me in and part of it," he said.

"But I wouldn't have played well anyway.

"The main focus was winning the series and winning the Ashes.

"A lot of people might not be happy with it -- some people will be shocked and disappointed -- but for me, for my personal happiness, it was the right time to go."

Martyn said he had settled happily into retirement with his new wife, Annika.

"I've never been comfortable with the whole celebrity stuff that comes with the game, I found [it] hard to deal with," he said.

"It's time to move on, it's just a freedom to say now I can go and live life and enjoy it."


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