Australian vice-captain Adam Gilchrist says he is considering retiring from one-day cricket to extend his Test career.
Although keen to continue playing one-day international cricket in the short term, Gilchrist conceded that the birth of his third child, coupled with cricket's demanding schedule, has prompted him to consider only playing Tests.
"Up until the last 12 months, I had never been a guy to consider phasing out one form of the game and just focusing on one," Gilchrist told yesterday's Sydney Morning Herald.
"But I am open to thinking about that now. I have been quite firm on playing both forms in the past, but I guess that things have changed a little. When a few of the guys started retiring last year, it made me stop and reflect on where I was at personally. And, while the appetite is still very strong to keep playing, I've just noticed the hunger and the drive for Test cricket that guys like Warney [Shane Warne] and Justin Langer had when they didn't have one-day cricket to consider," he said.
The 35-year-old Gilchrist said becoming a father again was also a factor.
"For me, too, I am entering another phase in my life with our third child," he told the newspaper. "There is a lot of cricket coming up over the next three years, so there are things to consider. That's not to say that I am announcing right now that I am retiring from one-day cricket, but it's just that I am more open-minded about the issue these days."
Gilchrist remains among the one-day game's leading entertainers, as proved by his pulsating century in this year's World Cup final against Sri Lanka.
He is likely to play limited-overs cricket through a seven-match tour of India later this year, the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup and the Australian summer.
But beyond that, Gilchrist's involvement with the Australian one-day side is not so certain, the newspaper said.
With Australia set to play 20 Tests next year, Australia's leading cricketers face the most gruelling schedule attempted by an Australian team.
Following the World Cup win in the Caribbean in April, Australia's challenge now will be to maintain its Test supremacy in the wake of the retirements of Warne, Langer, Glenn McGrath and Damien Martyn, as well as coach John Buchanan.
"The trick will be to manage the workload in consultation with the captain, the selectors and Cricket Australia," Gilchrist said.
Gilchrist has played 90 Tests since 1999, scoring 5,353 runs including 17 centuries and in 268 one-day internationals has scored 9,038 runs with 15 hundreds.