In a low-key press conference at Lord's this morning, attended only by a few ECB employees with little else to do, some bloggers trying to make up for the absence of the regular press pack in the Indian sub-continent and a man who'd only come to service the air conditioning, Hugh Morris, the Managing Director of England Cricket, made the momentous announcement that the England team is going to retire from all one-day international cricket.
'There has been general agreement that this winter's tough schedule has put a huge amount of strain on our players, and this was reflected in our poor showing at the World Cup. As there's no chance of the amount of international cricket ever being reduced, we have decided that the team should retire from one-day cricket so that it can concentrate on the five-day game.'
'In making this announcement now we are showing what a caring and sympathetic employer we are. We have protected our over-worked players from another major source of stress. It won't be necessary for Paul Collingwood or Andrew Strauss to agonize about whether or not they should play on as we've helpfully taken the decision for them. The same goes for the younger lads, although some of them - sorry, Luke - would never have been seen again in blue pyjamas anyway'.
'We've had a forty year career in the one-day game and it's high time we cut down on our commitments so that we can prolong our Test career a bit. Without this we would probably have given up on Test cricket sooner rather than later, but this should enable us to retain the Ashes on another couple of occasions before retiring from the game completely and taking up a position in the Sky Sports commentary box'.
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