Aaron Finch gets emotional farewell in final BBL outing after T20 retirement | Cricket

In a poignant and heartfelt farewell to their former captain Aaron Finch, the Melbourne Renegades orchestrated a fitting tribute ahead of the Melbourne derby against the Stars in the 2023-24 Big Bash League (BBL) match at Docklands Stadium. In a first for the BBL, the Renegades decided to retire Finch’s jersey No.5, an unprecedented move that underlined the significance of his contribution to the franchise. The entire venue was transformed into a sea of red, the signature colour of the Renegades, as a gesture of honour and respect for Finch, who announced his retirement from BBL and T20 cricket, drawing the curtain on a remarkable 15-year-long career.

Aaron Finch for the Melbourne Renegades(BBL)

In a touching display, the stands were adorned with the words, “Thank You Finchy,” encapsulating the sentiment of gratitude from the Renegades’ faithful. The emotional occasion was made even more special as Finch’s daughter, Esther, joined her father at the Marvel Stadium to witness the heartfelt tribute.

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Ahead of the match against the Stars, the 37-year-old cricketing stalwart expressed his confidence in the ‘next generation’ of players, affirming his belief that Australian cricket is in capable hands moving forward. Finch’s decision to step away from the game comes on the heels of an illustrious career where he not only etched his name as the all-time leading run-scorer for the Renegades but also secured the second-highest run-scorer position in the BBL overall.

“It’s time to move on and the next generation of players coming through is seriously good, so it’s in good hands,” Finch said before the match against the Stars.

Finch had captained the Renegades to a historic victory in the 2018-19 edition of the BBL, triumphing over the Stars in the final at Docklands Stadium. Furthermore, his leadership prowess was instrumental in steering Australia to their maiden T20 World Cup title in 2021 in the United Arab Emirates, with a memorable win against New Zealand in the final. In February of the following year, Finch bid adieu to all forms of international cricket, leaving an indelible mark on Australian cricket history.

As the curtains close on Finch’s playing career, the retirement of his jersey in the BBL symbolizes not just the end of an era for the Melbourne Renegades but also the enduring legacy of a cricketer who has left an indelible impact on the sport, both domestically and on the global stage.

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