A former white-ball BLACKCAP and Canterbury captain, Andrew Ellis has announced his retirement after an 18-year professional career for Canterbury.
The 37-year-old allrounder played 15 One-Day Internationals and five T20 Internationals for New Zealand in 2012 and 2013, but his greatest impact was on his beloved Canterbury side.
Ellis also played nine one-day matches and one first-class match for New Zealand A, and captained the New Zealand XI against England in 2013, and represented New Zealand Under 19 as a young man.
He became just the second player in New Zealand Domestic history to play more than 100 games in every format: 117 T20s, 109 List A (one-day) matches, and 105 first-class games.
Ellis won the NZC award for Domestic Player of the Year (men’s cricket) twice, in 2014/15 and again in 2016/17 season – making him the only male player to win this accolade twice.
The allrounder had worked his way back from 2010 back surgery and then some, captaining Canterbury in 2016/17 and lifting the Plunket Shield in his first year as captain.
He would also lead Canterbury to breaking an 11-year Ford Trophy title drought that summer, beating the Wellington Firebirds at home in Rangiora. It was the first time a Canterbury team had done a first-class and limited overs double since 1996/97.
A five-time Plunket Shield champion, Ellis finishes his Canterbury career with 8,644 runs and 494 wickets across the three formats in the red and black.
Canterbury captain Cole McConchie said Ellis would be missed from the playing group.
“’Elly’ has been the heart and soul of the team for a long time. I remember coming into the side and he really took me and the other young players under his wing. He was the utmost professional, and his legacy here at Canterbury will stand the test of time.
“He has a massive heart, and has been a great allrounder for us for years. He’ll be very much missed around the group. I just want to, on behalf of the whole Canterbury side, wish Elly the very best of time in life after cricket.”
One man that heavily influenced Ellis’s career is former Canterbury and current WHITE FERNS coach Bob Carter who praised Ellis’s dedication and desire to succeed in the game.
“Early on in his career, Andrew showed signs of his determination to get the very best out of his ability as a genuine allrounder,” Carter said.
“When Andrew was at the top of his game he was demanding and, in a positive way, a pain in the backside with his continuous questioning and pushing the boundaries to get better and better.
“During my involvement with him he was always working hard on improving his skills and was the selfless team man who you could put into any situation to win or save games for Canterbury.
“The game has been fortunate to have Andrew Ellis as a part of it, and I congratulate him on his outstanding achievement of playing more than 100 games in each format.”
Current BLACKCAPS coach, and former Canterbury teammate and coach, Gary Stead, said Ellis “will always stand out to me through his work ethic and desire to improve and better himself, especially early in his career when he would often be in hitting balls on the bowling machine at either end of the day.
“These unseen practice hours built his resilience and technique for a very successful career across all formats.
“Above all, Elly was keen to help other people get the best out of themselves, and this is always a great legacy to leave – he was stubborn, committed, and a very successful Canterbury man.”
5,179 runs and 249 wickets; the leading Canterbury first-class allrounder
9 first-class centuries
5 Plunket Shield titles for Canterbury; two as captain
2,339 runs and 130 wickets
Led Canterbury to The Ford Trophy title in 2016/17, after an 11-year drought.
Only Canterbury player to play more than 100 T20s (117)
1,126 runs; second highest run-scorer for Canterbury, behind Peter Fulton
116 wickets; leading wicket-taker for Canterbury