Canada’s last World Cup match against Australia last week also turned out to be John Davison’s final contest for this country. The former national captain announced his retirement on the eve of the match in Bangalore.
The Australian resident, who turns 41 in early May, made his One-Day International debut in the 2003 World Cup against Bangladesh.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time playing for Canada,” said the three-time World Cup participant. “I learned a lot about dealing with different cultural mentalities and I think that has made me more tolerant in my life. The sport has an excellent future in the country centred around a young national team filled with talented young players, a burgeoning fan following and an ever growing cricket-playing population. I am happy to have been part of the ride and have made some lifelong friendships along the way.”
Skipper Ashish Bagai, who made his debut in the historic meeting with Bangladesh eight years ago when Canada registered its first World Cup win, said Davison has made a significant contribution to Canadian cricket.
“John has brought a professionalism, expectation and self-belief that propelled us as a team and organization to new heights,” he said. “His performances on the biggest stage have laid the foundation for a new generation of Canadian cricketers to strive to achieve.
“I have enjoyed and learned much about the sport during 10 years that we played together. We shared in many great moments and I wish him and his family the very best in his future endeavours.”
Born in British Columbia, Davison moved to Australia at a young age and played Grade cricket in Melbourne before attending the Australia Cricket Academy. He also represented Australian state teams Victoria and South Australia.
National coach and former teammate Pubudu Dassanayake said Davison played the game hard and gave Canada a chance to win every time he took to the field.
“He brought on a new style of cricket for Canada,” said Dassanayake. “The exposure of our young players to his knowledge and experience has taught them how to deal with competition at this level and this is invaluable as the organization moves forward.”
In the 2003 World Cup, Davison made history scoring the fastest World Cup century against the West Indies with a superb 111 that included six sixes. He followed this with the third fastest World Cup half-century against New Zealand.
In a 2005 Intercontinental Cup match against the United States in Florida, Davison took 17-137 with his off-breaks which was the best bowling figures since England’s Jim Laker captured 19 Australian wickets in the 1956 Old Trafford Test.
“Canadian cricket will forever be linked to him,” said Cricket Canada’s first vice-president and high performance manager Ravin Moorthy. “I don’t think anyone will ever forget that day at Centurion when he scored the 100 (against the West Indies). It gave us all hope and showed that a Canadian can succeed at the absolute highest level and that success is part of the platform of modern Canadian cricket. A generation of Canadian kids grew up wanting to be like JD and that’s a very special thing.”
Cricket Canada’s president Ranjit Saini also thanked Davison for his service.
“His legacy provides us with a template from which to develop for the future,” he said.
Davison is a coach with Cricket Australia’s Centre of Excellence.