Luke Ronchi, New Zealand wicketkeeper-batsman, on Wednesday (June 21), brought down curtains on his international career.
The 36-year old, who began his international career with Australia in 2008, made a name for himself when he returned to his native country to revive his international career. In February 2012, he announced his intention to return to New Zealand in an attempt to qualify for the national team and signed with Wellington a month later before scoring a century on his debut.
Ronchi finally made his New Zealand debut in April 2013 against England’s at Lord’s, becoming the first player to represent both Australia and New Zealand. After playing four One-Day Internationals and three T20 Internationals for Australia between 2008 and 2009, Ronchi went on to represent New Zealand in 81 ODIs, 29 T20Is as well as 4 Tests. The hard-hitting wicketkeeper-batsman was an integral part of the New Zealand team that made it to the final of the 2015 World Cup.
Ronchi’s most memorable moment in international cricket came when he played a belligerent knock of 170 not out from just 99 balls in an ODI against Sri Lanka at Dunedin in 2014-15. He will continue plying his trade for Wellington as well as on the domestic T20 circuit across the globe with his next assignment coming in the NatWest T20 Blast for Leicestershire.
Speaking about his career with New Zealand, Ronchi said: “It was a dream come true.”
“I can’t think of a better time to have been involved with New Zealand cricket. From the 2015 World Cup campaign, through to the overseas tours of that time and some amazing games and series, it’s been a genuine highlight for me.
“It would also be remiss of me to not acknowledge the incredible support provided by my wife Shaan and our children Brody and Indi. Cricket takes you away from home for long periods of time, and my family have been very understanding,” he said.
New Zealand head coach Mike Hesson paid his tribute to Ronchi by describing him as the ultimate team man and the epitome of a professional athlete.
“We’ll remember Luke fondly for the energy he created in the field and his selfless attitude towards the team,” said Hesson.
“He was always prepared to play a role for the greater good of the team; to do what was required even if that risked sacrificing his wicket.
“Luke was one of the best glovemen going around and I think that’s often overlooked in a game increasingly dominated by batting and run-scoring,” added Hesson. “He was a very skilful wicketkeeper, and a very destructive batsman.
“We’ll miss having him around the group and we wish him well in his future endeavours,” concluded Hesson.