Ian Blackwell: Injury ends all-rounder's professional career

Ian Blackwell

Former England all-rounder Ian Blackwell has retired from professional cricket after a third operation failed to correct a shoulder problem.

The 34-year-old was contracted to Durham, but spent part of last season at Warwickshire, helping them to County Championship title success.

Durham chief executive David Harker told BBC Newcastle: "Unfortunately he's not going to be able to continue.

"His contract has ended and we wish him well in the future."

Blackwell revealed on Twitter last month that he had been diagnosed with arthritis in his left shoulder.

"I understand he's considering a role as an umpire and I'm sure he'll be a great umpire," Harker continued.

Blackwell's began his career with Derbyshire, but in 2000, he moved to Somerset, where he spent the next eight years.

His form at Taunton, particularly his reputation for powerful hitting and useful spin, brought him to the attention of the England selectors.

He made the first of 34 one-day international appearances against Zimbabwe in 2002 and was a member of the squad for the World Cup in South Africa the following year.

Blackwell also won a solitary Test cap in India in 2006, but only contributed four runs and seven wicketless overs in a drawn encounter in Nagpur.

His wealth of county experience attracted the interest of reigning county champions Durham ahead of the 2009 season, and his 801 runs and 43 wickets were crucial in the successful defence of the title that summer.

Injuries affected his last few years in the north east, but a further Championship success and a with Warwickshire proved an enjoyable swansong for the Chesterfield-born player.