''I was reluctant to retire, but you have to be at a certain physical level to keep going,'' MacGill told mediapersons at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) here yesterday.
''Once the ball is hit past me, it takes me slightly longer than the Queen Mary to turn around. That's not good for a professional athlete.'' According to the 37-year-old, the immediate cause of his retirement is a misfield during the second Test against the West Indies in Antigua.
''The nail in the coffin was a misfield,'' MacGill said.''There were some undulations in the outfield, and I misfielded and slipped over. I found it a bit hard to get back up, to be honest, and I felt a bit embarrassed.'' ''I felt sore and old and clumsy and that's when I thought, 'I can't do this.' I don't want the team to have to carry me.
If the ball came straight to me in the field, there wasn't a problem. But the ball doesn't always come straight to you. I didn't want to embarrass myself any more,'' he added. ''I didn't want to have to be hidden in the field. That is no way to represent the Australian cricket team. I didn't want to let anybody down.
''It became apparent that if I kept playing the way things were, I would only have been doing it for me. That would not have been the right thing to do. I'm really pleased I haven't let anyone down.
That's the most important thing for me.'' MacGill left the international arena with 208 wickets from 44 Tests. He became Australia's leading spinner after the retirement of the legendary Shane Warne last year.
However, a wrist operation on his bowling arm in late 2007 and an injury prone knee prevented him from making a substantial impact.