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Monday, November 30, 2020

Swing-song: Irfan Pathan, architect of 2007 World T20 win, bows out

Irfan Pathan, one of the best swing bowlers and all-rounders to have played for India, has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.

By: Sports Desk | Updated: January 4, 2020 8:45:27 pm
Irfan Pathan announced his retirement on Saturday. (File Photo)

Irfan Pathan, 35, announced his retirement from all forms of cricket on Saturday. He had made his debut for India at the age of 19 in 2003.

Pathan played 29 Tests, 120 ODIs and 24 T20Is for India, leaving a combined legacy of 301 international wickets. He last played in India colours in 2012.

“I will keep contributing to Indian cricket, but it is always better if someone else takes my place in domestic cricket. There are lot of other things in store for me and I will keep focusing on them,” Pathan said while making the announcement on Star Sports on Saturday.

“It has been a great journey. I played cricket with all my heart and soul. I am really proud of it and when I look back, I feel happy with my achievements. It’s been a great career,” he added.

Also Read | Irfan Pathan’s best performances for India

“In domestic cricket, too, I have been part of Jammu and Kashmir cricket and after last season, I thought what’s the motivation to play any more?” Pathan said.

Pathan took a first-over Test hat-trick vs Pakistan in 2006. He took 10 wickets at an average of 14.90 in the T20 World Cup in 2007. His spell of 3 for 16 was vital in the final vs Pakistan as India lifted the title.

Another of Pathan’s greatest moments came on the 2004 tour of Australia, when he became the only Asian player to win a Man of the Match award at the WACA.

Also Read | Breaking cricket’s frontiers: Irfan Pathan’s unbreakable records

Pathan played his last IPL game in 2017 and was unpicked in subsequent auctions. He did not make himself available for the IPL auction in December last year. He last played a competitive game in February 2019 in the Syed Mushtaq Ali trophy for Jammu and Kashmir.

Pathan, one of the best exponents of swing bowling in Indian cricket, was also seen batting at No. 3 on many occasions because of his batting prowess.

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