Laurie Evans, an England first-class cricketer, has decided to retire from red-ball cricket after signing a white-ball only contract extension with Surrey. After three seasons at Sussex, the 34-year-old batsman re-joined Surrey for all forms in 2020 and also played five first-class games during his second tenure at The Oval. Last summer, he also made two appearances in the County Championship. Evans had originally joined Sussex to play more first-class cricket after failing to earn regular first-time opportunities at Warwickshire. He averages over 30 in first-class cricket but has yet to participate in an international match. In the T20 format, though, his fortunes improved, as he ended as the Blast’s highest run-scorer in 2018.
Evans recently won the player of the match award in the Big Bash final in Australia, helping Perth Scorchers defeat Sydney Sixers. Evans has a strike rate of 134 or higher in 199 T20 outings (4,695 runs). Evans has played 73 games in the red-ball style, averaging 3.49 runs per game with six hundred and 18 half-centuries.
Evans stated in a statement announcing his intention to play solely white-ball cricket, “I have taken the choice to devote the balance of my career on white-ball cricket for a variety of reasons,” according to a Cricinfo article. “To begin with, I still have a strong desire to compete at the world level. Although my prospects of doing so in Test cricket have vanished, I still think that I can contribute to England in white-ball cricket and that by concentrating only on this, I can best improve my talents. Second, I feel that this is the most effective strategy for me to manage my physical health in the next few years. I’m enjoying my time at The Kia Oval as well as the experiences I’m gaining from competing in franchise tournaments throughout the globe.”
The cricketer’s contract with Surrey was set to expire at the end of 2022, but it has been extended for at least another year, with the possibility of a third season.