Nevill captained NSW in a record 43 Shield games and played 17 Tests and 9 T20Is for Australia
Former Australia Test and T20I wicketkeeper Peter Nevill has announced his retirement from all forms of professional cricket after 13 years at the top level.
Nevill, 36, played 17 Tests and nine T20Is for Australia but last played international cricket in 2016. Since then, he has completed a distinguished and record-breaking career with New South Wales. He retires having captained the Blues in 43 Shield matches, more than any other player in history, and as one of just four men to have played more than 100 Shield matches for NSW.
Nevill played the last of his 101 matches in February against Tasmania, with a shoulder injury ending his season prematurely. He also holds the record for the most catches for his state with 310, and is second on the Blues’ all-time dismissal list behind Phil Emery.
Nevill played in two Shield titles and two Marsh Cup titles with New South Wales, leading them to their last Shield triumph in 2019-20 which was won in unusual circumstances.
Nevill played 17 Tests for Australia during a transition period in 2015-16. He replaced Brad Haddin for the Lord’s Test on the 2015 Ashes tour when Haddin withdrew for personal reasons and kept his spot when he became available again which effectively ended Haddin’s distinguished international career.
He played 17 consecutive matches and kept impressively throughout but averaged just 22.28 with the bat and made only three half-centuries, which belied his first-class batting record given he finished with 5927 runs at 36.81 and 10 first-class centuries. Nevill lost his place to Matthew Wade in the selection purge that followed Australia’s disastrous loss to South Africa in Hobart.
His nine T20 internationals included the 2016 T20 World Cup, when he played as a specialist wicketkeeper batting as low as No.10 in one match.
“I’d say [I was] someone who got the most out of the ingredients they had,” Nevill said. “I’ve been fortunate to have played for as long as I have. It is hard to condense [my career] into something short and sweet. However, there’s the opportunities I’ve had, the experiences, the people I’ve met, being able to travel the world, the ups and downs. Something that stands out is the very special people I’ve met, and there was no shortage of them at the Blues.”
Nevill finishes a proud Blue despite having grown up in Victoria. He played underage state cricket for Victoria but was forced to move when Wade arrived from Tasmania to become Victoria’s wicketkeeper in all formats. Wade ironically had left Tasmania due to the presence of Tim Paine. All three traded places as Australia’s Test wicketkeeper in the period between 2015 and 2017.
“What struck me is I was made to feel welcome by the group [in NSW],” Nevill said. “I was also impressed by how well the senior players communicated to the group what it means to play for NSW: the tradition, the history, and the pride people have in wearing the Baggy Blue.
“Hopefully, we’ve continued to pass that message down the line, and that the young players understand the honour of what it means to be a Baggy Blue – representing yourself and those who’ve gone before you.
“What stands out is the talent. Talent can sometimes be a dirty word, but we now have an incredibly talented bunch of young players. It is now up to them to take the next step and to really understand their games and how they’re going to be successful.
“Thankfully, there’s a good group of senior players and coaches who will help them do that. Hopefully, they go on to dominate world cricket.”
Nevill will spend time with his family but has expressed an interest in doing some coaching after a brief coaching/playing stint with Melbourne Stars during the recent BBL, although the experience was curtailed by the Covid outbreak that ravaged the tournament. He is also close to completing a Masters degree with a view towards a new career as a financial advisor.
Alex Malcolm is an Associate Editor at ESPNcricinfo