Serious heart condition forces England's Taylor to quit

James Taylor has been forced to retire from cricket at the age of 26 due to a serious heart condition.

England player James Taylor (front) and other team members leaving the grounds at the end of the first Test match between South Africa and England at Kingsmead Stadium in Durban on 30 December 2015. Picture: Marco Longari/AFP.

LONDON - England batsman James Taylor has been forced to retire from cricket at the age of 26 due to a serious heart condition, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said on Tuesday.

Taylor, who plays county cricket for Nottinghamshire, withdrew from last week's game against Cambridge MCCU with what was believed to be a viral infection.

However, scans revealed he has a serious heart condition known as Arrhythmogenic Right Ventricular Arrhythmia (ARVC).

"Safe to say this has been the toughest week of my life! My world is upside down. But I'm here to stay and I'm battling on!" Taylor said on his Twitter account.

Safe to say this has been the toughest week of my life! My world is upside down. But I'm here to stay and I'm battling on! #lifestooshort 😝🤒

Absolutely overwhelmed with all the support I've received. You don't understand how much it means to me and how much it helps! Thank you! 😘🙏

The middle order batsman played seven test matches and 27 one-day internationals for England and captained the side against Ireland in May last year.

"It is both shocking and saddening to hear that James' career has been cut short in such a sudden and unexpected manner," England team director Andrew Strauss said in a statement released by the ECB.

"Throughout his career, he has constantly impressed with his determination to make the absolute most of his ability, and it is immensely cruel that such a hard working player will be unable to fulfil his great potential in the international arena.

"The ECB will work closely with Nottinghamshire and together we will do everything possible to help James through this difficult period, and aid him in his recovery."