Northamptonshire’s Graeme White has confirmed his retirement from red-ball cricket in order to focus exclusively on the shorter formats of the game and hopefully prolong his playing career.

The 31-year-old left-arm spinner, who joined the academy at Wantage Road aged 14 back in 2001, has made 39 first-class appearances for Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire since 2006 – scoring 659 runs and claiming 65 wickets at 42.00 – but he’s played in only eight Championship matches over the past two seasons.

Named the Royal London Cup’s Player of the Year in 2016, he underwent surgery on his shoulder last autumn.

“I missed out on a lot of the t20 Blast last year through injury (managing only four games in the competition) and I want to give myself the best possible chance of being able to play for Northamptonshire for as long as I can,’ he explains.

“I feel if I pack in the red-ball cricket it will give me a better opportunity of going well into my thirties and hopefully beyond.  That was the thinking behind my decision.

“Red ball isn’t my best format so this will give a chance for others to come through and I can concentrate on the shorter formats.

“If you’re a regular in the side – as I have been in white-ball cricket – you get used to it and you enjoy it.  When you’re in and out of the team it’s not ideal, and I’d just had enough of it really.

“I will miss the longer game because I’ve had some success and some great victories, both at Notts and Northants.  But that’s the way it’s panned out.

“Now I’m looking forward to preparing for this year’s Vitality Blast and hopefully playing my part in a successful campaign for the Steelbacks.”

Northamptonshire’s opening match in the competition will be against Leicestershire at Northampton on Wednesday July 4.

Vitality Blast is back! Northamptonshire Steelbacks host seven Twenty20 games this July and August. Purchase your tickets in advance and save £5 att or by calling the Ticket Office on 01604 514455.