Jenny Gunn, England’s veteran allrounder, has announced her retirement from international cricket after a 15-year career.
Gunn made her debut as an 18-year-old in 2004, and went on to make 259 appearances across formats, winning three World Cups and five Ashes series. Only Charlotte Edwards (309) has represented England Women more often.
Her maiden England appearance came in the world’s first T20 international – against New Zealand at Hove in August 2004, a year before the men followed suit – while her final outing came against West Indies at Chelmsford in June.
As a probing, accurate seam bowler, Gunn’s strength lay in her wicket-to-wicket discipline, allied to a range of slower balls including one, nicknamed the “whiff” by her team-mates, which barely registered on the speed gun.
She finishes her career as England’s second-highest wicket-taker in ODIs and third in T20Is. Her ODI tally of 136 wickets at 28.10 was recently overhauled by Katherine Brunt, while Anya Shrubsole (87) and Dani Hazell (85) nudged ahead of her T20I total of 75.
In the course of her career, Gunn was forced to endure accusations of chucking – her long-term team-mate, Sarah Taylor, even gave her the nickname “Chucky” – but she kept plugging away with a pared-down action that was as effective as it at times looked awkward.
In Test cricket, her best figures of 5 for 19 in 18 overs came in her final Test outing, against India at Wormsley in 2014, and her impact as a lower-order batsman was always valuable. In all, she amassed 2702 runs in all three formats for England, with seven half-centuries and a best of 73 against New Zealand in 2007.
Gunn was born into a sporting family, with her father Bryn playing in the Nottingham Forest side that won the European Cup under Brian Clough in 1980. And that achievement was ultimately matched by Gunn’s three World titles – two World Cups in 2009 and 2017, and the World T20, also in 2009.
“I have made one of the hardest decisions and decided the time has come to retire from international cricket,” said Gunn. “I started as a young kid playing the game I loved for fun and I could only dream of becoming a professional cricketer.
“I’ve been lucky enough to play in some great teams and to be part of some amazing battles over the years but as a small girl I always said I wanted to put a World Cup medal next to my dad’s European Cup winner’s medal, and there are now three of them next to his medal on the mantelpiece!
“I’m so grateful for the support throughout my career and I couldn’t have done it without my friends. But most of all, I couldn’t have done it without my family, all of whom have been there for me every step of the way.”
Managing Director of Women’s Cricket, Clare Connor, said: “Jenny has been the most tremendous servant to England Women’s cricket throughout the 15 years she has played for England.
“Her longevity, work ethic and commitment have been hugely impressive across both the amateur and professional eras and on countless occasions she has delivered match-winning performances for the team with both bat and ball.
“Very few international cricketers have carried themselves with so much humility and shown such care for her team-mates as Jenny. She will be very missed by players and staff alike.”