Three club stalwarts call time for Lions

LAUNCESTON Cricket Club legend Jade Selby is happy that he has been able to call time on his career knowing he could still perform at the level.

The 35-year-old announced his retirement following the Lions' semi-final loss to Mowbray  after a career that included 8204 runs (with 25 centuries) from 192 matches at an average of 50.64, while he also took 226 wickets at 15.89 with his medium pacers.

In one-day cricket he scored 2408 runs at 37.63 and took 60 wickets at 19.73 in 1978. He made his A-grade debut in 1994-95, spending all but two summers since at the club since the age of nine, when he first played for the club in under 13s.

He finished in good touch, winning the players award and the first grade best and fairest for the club, and only a few weeks ago turned back the clock with an unbeaten 175 against Westbury.

``I wanted to go out while I still had a bit of respect, I didn't want to go out thinking `I went one year too many', '' Selby said.

``Just getting out of bed and having to be at grounds at 9.15am was starting to get too much, as well as being too sore on Sundays, means I wasn't really enjoying training anymore.

``A couple of the younger boys asked me after the game what it felt like, and the decision is right, body and mind wise, but it is sad I won't play for Launnie again.''

Selby, who played in nine premierships, captained and coached the club and is a member of the club's second era XII and one-day teams of the century, found it hard to pinpoint an individual highlight in a career littered with team success.

Joining Selby in retirement is all-rounder Ross Clayton, while coach Paul Bunton has also finished up with the club.

Clayton, along with Selby, returned to the club this year to help guide their younger players, played 249 NTCA and one-day games for the club.

``The body is not great, as it has been a tough season with little niggles and things, so I knew the time was right,'' Clayton said.

``The cricket club has been my life, as I was basically born into it with my father (Garry) playing there, so it is  a sad thing [after making his A-grade debut in 1997].''

Bunton, who as a medium-pace bowler captained the club for two years before coaching it for another two years, felt he was leaving the Lions in a strong position.

``It's been a great ride, especially with the premierships in 2010-11,'' Bunton said.

``I believe the club will be in good hands. We've continued to develop some of our younger guys and get games into them, so given Ross and Jade's retirement now is the time for the younger players to step up and lead the way for the Lions.''

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