Vision problems force Kieswetter to call time on his career

England's Craig Kieswetter.
England's Craig Kieswetter.
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England and Somerset wicketkeeper-batsman Craig Kieswetter has announced his retirement from cricket due to an eye injury.

The 27-year-old South Africa-born player sustained a fractured cheekbone in a LV= County Championship match with Northamptonshire in July 2014 and struggled to regain perfect vision.

“Having gone through that experience of my eye injury and everything it entailed, I feel mentally I will never again be the player that I was,” Kieswetter said.

“I have had a terrific career, with plenty of ups and occasional downs, and I am calling time on my career and walking away with no regrets.”

Kieswetter was hit by a bouncer from David Willey in the match at Wantage Road and also sustained a broken nose.

He returned for the last two matches of the season, but realised while playing Twenty20 cricket in South Africa over the winter that he had not recovered sufficiently to enable him to regain his best form, leading to his decision.

He made 46 one-day international appearances for England and 25 appearances in Twenty20 internationals.

Kieswetter made his Somerset first-team debut in 2007 and averaged just under 40 in first-class and list A cricket and almost 32 in Twenty20s. He took 308 catches and claimed 11 stumpings.

He was educated at Millfield in Somerset and has a Scottish mother and played for England after qualifying in February 2010.

Kieswetter won the Twenty20 World Cup with England in the West Indies that May and was man of the match in the final defeat of Australia after hitting 63.

“I’ll have so many memories of a career that spanned nine years of my life during which I have made so many friends.

“See you all on the sidelines,” Kieswetter added.

Director of cricket Matt Maynard said: “This is sad news for all concerned.

“He has been a major influence both on and off the field and will be missed by players, coaches, staff and fans alike.

“At his best Craig was one of, if not the most explosive ‘keeper-batsman in the game. He is an extremely gifted cricketer who could win a game on his own.

“His record speaks for itself and the game will miss him.”

Somerset chief executive Guy Lavender said: “This is awful news both for Craig and the club.

“But we completely understand why he has come to this difficult decision.

“Craig has made an immense contribution to the success of Somerset and England since joining us.

“He will be greatly missed and will always receive a very warm welcome at the County Ground.”