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Isobel Joyce steps down as Ireland Women's captain

Isobel Joyce steps down as Ireland Women' captain
Isobel Joyce (left) has played 132 international games across all formats and has led Ireland in a record 62 matches.
©International Cricket Council

Ireland Women's team captain Isobel Joyce has stepped down from the post after the team exited the ICC Women's World T20 in the group stages.

Since making her debut in 1999, Joyce has played 132 international games across all formats and has led Ireland in a record 62 matches.

In the 2016 ICC Women’s World Cup, Ireland lost all their four Group A games and finished at the last of the points table.

Reasoning that it was the right time to help a younger player take up the captaincy of the side, Joyce said that her focus right now is to help the team qualify for the 2017 Women’s Cricket World Cup.

"It's been an honour and a privilege to captain my country for the last six years.

"I've played cricket for Ireland for over half of my life and while I have not decided when I will call time on my playing career, I feel it's time to step aside and help a younger leader to learn the role before I do eventually retire.

"I'm looking forward to focusing on my own cricket for the twilight of my playing career and hopefully helping the team qualify for another 50 over World Cup, 16 years after I played in my first one."

Joyce also went on to thank her family, all the coaches who helped her throughout her career and also went on to thank the Ireland team manager, Sue O’Connor.

"There are far too many people I'd like to thank for supporting me throughout my career but to choose a few, my parents Jimmy and Maureen.

“Also Eddie and Ursula Lewis for being the constants in my playing career in Merrion; Eddie for the coaching and Ursula for basically managing me through my younger years.

"All of the coaches I've had the pleasure of working with throughout the years, from John Wills to Aaron Hamilton and in particular Miriam Grealey who taught me so much as my captain and coach.

"I'd also like to thank my fiancé John Anderson who has put up with and supported me despite the crazy schedule captaining this team requires.

“Last but not least, Sue O'Connor who has managed the team over the last few years and without whom we would be lost."

Head coach of Ireland, Aaron Hamilton thanked Joyce for her services as a captain of the team and stated that the experience of the 32-year-old will be very crucial for Ireland as they attempt to bring in new players.

"Isobel has been a professional leader both on and off the field for the team," said Hamilton.

"She will be missed in the role of skipper but I'm delighted she will continue to play and assist this group of talented young players, her experience will be invaluable for us going forward.

“Now we start the task of bringing on the next generation of leaders in women's cricket in Ireland.”

In a press release, Cricket Ireland stated that the decision on who will replace Joyce as the captain of the side will be announced in the following weeks.

© Cricket World 2016