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Title:Mitchell Johnson announces retirement

News Paper

Mitchell Johnson, the Australia fast bowler will retire from international cricket at the conclusion of the second Test between Australia and New Zealand in Perth.

Johnson, 34, has struggled in the both the Tests, taking just five wickets at an average of over 60. He picked up four wickets for 163 runs in the first Test in Brisbane last week, which got Johnson contemplating his future, and figures of 1-157 in New Zealand's first innings in the second Test, the most expensive by an Australian bowler in a Test at the WACA, finally led to him taking the call.

"I feel now is the best time to say goodbye," Johnson said. "I have been lucky enough to have had a wonderful career and enjoyed every moment of playing for my country. It's been an incredible ride."

Born and raised in Queensland, Johnson ended up playing his state cricket for Western Australia and it is fitting that he played his 73rd and final Test at the WACA.

"The ride has to come to an end at some point and to do so here at the WACA is very special. I've given the decision a lot of thought. Beyond this match, I'm just not sure that I can continue competing consistently at the level required to wear the baggy green."

In a career spanning a decade, Johnson bagged 587 wickets since his debut for Australia against New Zealand at Christchurch in December 2005. A two-time World Cup Winner - 2007 and 2015 - Johnson was named the 2009 and 2014 International Cricket Council (ICC) Player of the Year. With 311 Test wickets, Johnson is the fourth-highest wicket-taker for Australia after Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, and Dennis Lillee.

"My career has certainly had its up and downs but I can honestly say I have given it my all and am proud of everything I have achieved. To win an Ashes series and a Cricket World Cup is something I will treasure forever," Johnson said.

"My family have been by my side throughout and I could not have achieved all I have without their support. They have made a lot of sacrifices, especially my beautiful wife Jess who has provided me with unconditional support, and I am incredibly grateful for that. They say the greatest thing about playing sport is the friends you make along the way and I have been fortunate enough to play and work with some incredible people and have cemented lifelong friendships.

"I would certainly like to thank the people of Australia, and all those around the world, who have supported me. The encouragement I have received has been extremely humbling and playing in front of them is certainly something I will miss."