Lancashire hero quits cricket

Prince - bowing out

Prince - bowing out

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Lancashire batsman Ashwell Prince has announced he will retire from cricket at the end of this season.

The 38-year-old South African made a similar declaration at the culmination of the 2014 campaign, only to perform a U-turn and rejoin Lancashire once more this summer.

That decision has been vindicated by 2,000 runs across all competitions for Prince, who has also helped the Red Rose earn promotion to LV= County Championship Division One and win the NatWest T20 Blast trophy for the first time in their history.

“I’ve decided to come to the decision where I’m going to retire from all cricket at the end of the season,” Prince said.

“I wanted to come back and get the side back up to Division One and that’s been achieved.

“Not only that, but we’ve won the NatWest T20 Blast which was a bonus. The whole squad have been excellent and I’ve absolutely loved my time at Lancashire.”

Prince represented South Africa in 66 Tests, scoring 11 centuries and as many 50s, while he also appeared in 52 one-day internationals for the Proteas.

He is in his third spell at Emirates Old Trafford and was part of a record-breaking 501 third-wicket alliance with compatriot Alviro Petersen in July.

“Ashwell has been a great player throughout his career and has served Lancashire well during his spells with the club,” added head coach Ashley Giles.

“Not only have his performances been exceptional but his experience has proved to be valuable for his team-mates within the dressing room.”

Surrey’s domination of the second day of their game against Lancashire at Old Trafford was marred by concern over a thumb injury sustained by new England call-up Zafar Ansari.

Ansari was selected in England’s squad for next month’s Test series against Pakistan on Tuesday but he was later struck in the field trying to take a very difficult catch off Lancashire batsman Ashwell Prince and taken to hospital for checks.

He left the field holding a bandage to his left hand, and Surrey were awaiting further news about the seriousness of the injury to a player who made 99 when opening the batting on Monday.

Ansari’s injury took the shine off Surrey’s day, the visitors reducing Lancashire to 141 for five - Prince unbeaten on 38 - having posted a formidable 480 in their first innings with Jason Roy (66), Gary Wilson (51) and skipper Gareth Batty (50 not out) all making half-centuries.