Zimbabwe's Brendan Taylor has called time on his international career after agreeing to a three-year contract with English county side Nottinghamshire.
Taylor, who was stand-in captain for Zimbabwe's most recent match against Ireland, has signed a deal with Nottinghamshire that falls under the Kolpak ruling, which allows players from countries with Associate European Union (EU) Agreements to work in an EU country, but also makes him ineligible to represent Zimbabwe while that contract is in effect.
The 29-year-old is expected to play his final one-day international in Zimbabwe’s World Cup pool match against India tomorrow (Saturday), and will again take the captaincy reins if Elton Chigumbura fails to overcome a quad injury.
Sadly after 11 years I have decided to retire from ZC.My heart will always be close to my team mates and country.Thank you for your support!
— Brendan Taylor (@BrendanTaylor86) March 12, 2015
Taylor has been a standout batsman for his country for the past decade, averaging 34 in both his 23 Tests and 166 ODIs, and scoring 11 centuries across the two formats.
Highlights of his career included a Test hundred against New Zealand, and hundreds in each innings of a Test against Bangladesh in April 2013.
Referring to the Kolpak deal, Taylor told ESPN: "It's been one of the biggest decisions I've had to make; in fact the biggest decision.”
"I've always been very passionate about playing for Zimbabwe, I still am. I sat down with my wife and we decided to make this decision together. It hasn't been easy. I feel very sad about it but at the same time very excited to be a part of one of the better county sides in England.
“They've welcomed me with open arms and I'm looking forward to cementing a good relationship with them over the next three years.
“But I'm very, very sad to leave Zimbabwe cricket. I've had some fond memories and I have some great friends here but life goes on and you have to try and make the best decisions for your family and moving forward."