Australia wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist has announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket.
Gilchrist has made 96 consecutive Test appearances
The 36-year-old will retire from Tests after the current match against India, and will quit one-day internationals at the end of the season.
"It's with great pride that I make the decision to retire," said Gilchrist, who on Friday broke the record for the most Test dismissals by a gloveman.
"I came to this decision after much discussion with those important to me."
Since Australia's 5-0 Ashes whitewash in 2006-7, Australia have lost experienced stars Damien Martyn, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Justin Langer to international retirement and Gilchrist's departure has robbed them of another stellar talent.
Cricket Australia are expected to give 30-year-old Brad Haddin the chance to replace Gilchrist in the side as their next wicket-keeper/batsman.
Haddin has played 26 one-day internationals, scoring three fifties at an average of 31, and also played four international Twenty20 games, but has yet to feature at Test level.
Gilchrist will go down in history as one of the most destructive batsmen the sport has ever seen, while his skills behind the stumps saw him overtake Mark Boucher's world record for Test dismissals on Friday.
He made his Test debut in 1999, and scored 5,556 runs, took 377 catches and made 37 stumpings in his 96 consecutive appearances.
Gilchrist also holds the record for the highest number of sixes in Test cricket, with a trademark shot over the boundary against Sri Lanka in November 2007 bringing up his 100th.
He won the World Cup with Australia in 1999, 2003 and 2007 in his role as a devastating batsman for Australia's one-day side.
1992 New South Wales debut
1996 Australia ODI debut
1998 Maiden ODI century
1999 Test debut for Australia
1999 Maiden ton in 2nd Test
2002 Test highest, 204no
2002 Cricketer of the Year
2003 ODI player of the Year
2004 ODI highest, 172
2004 ODI player of the Year
2006 Passes 5,000 Test runs
2007 Third World Cup title
2007 Aussie dismissals record
2008 World dismissals record
In the third Ashes Test at Perth in 2006 he smashed the second-fastest Test century in history, from 57 balls - just one more than Viv Richards in 1986 - hitting three sixes in an over off Monty Panesar.
It was the last of his 17 Test hundreds, and he reached three figures against all nine of Australia's major Test opponents.
His final World Cup innings was also a memorable one, firing 13 fours and eight sixes for 149 from 104 balls in the final against Sri Lanka.
"I thank all my team-mates and support staff who have given me the most enjoyable, fun career anyone could hope for and to the many officials and opponents I have come across," added Gilchrist.
"It has been terrific to play against you and more importantly get to know you."
Gilchrist's former Australia team-mate Michael Slater was one of a string of contemporaries to pay tribute to the popular left-hander.
Gilchrist has made 96 consecutive Test appearances for Australia
"We're all shocked but I think it's a good decision," he said.
"He was a superstar who changed the face of cricket. He has set a standard for keeper/batsmen that I don't think will ever be matched."
Another former Australia opener Justin Langer said Gilchrist was one of the sport's all-time greats.
"He is one of the best players I have ever played with and the best wicket-keeper/batsman who has ever played the game," added Langer.
Cricket Australia chairman Creagh O'Connor said Gilchrist would be remembered as one of the game's gentlemen, with his principled decision to "walk" when he believed he was out earning him the respect of fans all over the world.
"Adam has unquestionably been Australia's finest ever wicket-keeper/batsman," he said.
"He has been a great adornment to the game of cricket and his statistics with bat and gloves speak for themselves.
"His influence on the game has gone well beyond statistics both in terms of the dignity with which he has played the game and his respect for the traditions and the spirit of cricket."