England all-rounder Moeen Ali retires from Test cricket to focus on white-ball formats

After making his Test debut in 2014, Moeen scored 2,914 runs and took 195 wickets in 64 matches

Moeen Ali's final Test match for England came against India at the start of September. Reuters
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English all-rounder Moeen Ali has announced his retirement from Test cricket, the England and Wales Cricket Board said on Monday.

Moeen, 34, made his Test debut in 2014 and scored 2,914 runs in 64 matches at an average of 28.29. As an off-spin bowler, he collected 195 wickets.

Moeen said in a statement that he was satisfied with his Test career and hoped it would inspire other British Muslims to play for England.

"I've enjoyed Test cricket but that intensity can be too much sometimes and I feel like I’ve done enough of it and I’m happy and content with how I've done," he said.

"It always takes somebody to inspire you ... I know he wasn't English but someone like (former South Africa batsman) Hashim Amla, when I first saw him, I thought 'if he can do it I can do it'. It does take that little spark.

"I'd love one day in eight to 10 years’ time to say 'Moeen made it easier for me'."

Having played little Test cricket since the 2019 Ashes, Moeen was recalled for the home summer series against India and played in three matches.

In an interview with the Guardian and ESPNCricinfo, he said he was struggling to focus on Test cricket and now intends to specialise in white-ball cricket.

"During the India series I felt like I was done, to be honest," he said.

"I felt good, the atmosphere felt good, the dressing room etc, but cricketing-wise, I found it a struggle to get in the zone bowling and batting and in the field. And the more I tried, I just couldn’t do it."

England's next Test series is against Australia in the Ashes starting in December.

"I was thinking about the Ashes and how I would love to have gone back and done well there," Moeen added. "But it's such a long trip if I'm not 'in it' and I think it'd be very, very difficult."

Moeen has been included in the England squad for the T20 World Cup, which takes place in the UAE and Oman and begins next month.

Updated: September 27, 2021, 8:04 AM