Yuvraj Singh retirement: After garnering several accolades over the years, Yuvraj Singh announced his retirement from international cricket Monday. India’s 2011 World Cup hero last donned the Indian colours in 2017 during a T20I match against England, which India won by 75 runs.
“After 25 years in and around the 22 yards and almost 17 years of international cricket on and off, I have decided to move on. This game taught me how to fight, how to fall, to dust off, to get up again and move forward,” he said at a press conference in Mumbai.
“I was extremely lucky to play 400 games for India. I could have never imagined it when I first started playing cricket,” Singh said.
“It was a love-hate relationship with this game. I can’t explain what it really means to me. This game taught me to fight. I have failed more times than I succeeded and I will never give up,” he said.
Singh thanked family, teammates, coaching staff and others who he had interacted with during his playing career. Singh said he would also be focussing on his work with cancer patients.
“To be a part of history that was made after 28 years, what more could I ask for,” Singh said, in a reference to the 2011 World Cup victory. He also said it was the biggest high of his career.
“I think it’s the perfect day to move on,” he said. “This has been a wonderful journey and see you on the other side.”
One of India’s finest limited-overs cricketers, Singh also featured in the last edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) after being bought by Mumbai Indians for Rs 1 crore. However, out of the 16 matches in the tournament-winning campaign of the team, the left-handed batsman only appeared in four games and scored 98 runs, including one half-century.
“If I had got to play in the last IPL, which we won, that would have been an ideal send-off, but that was not to be,” Singh said. He said he had decided a year ago that he would be playing his last edition of the IPL this year.
The left-handed batsman was a crucial part of the Indian unit which won the 2007 T20I World Cup, and had been reported to be seriously contemplating retirement from international cricket to pursue a career in ICC approved foreign Twenty20 leagues.
“I would definitely want to play more cricket,” he said, adding that he was open to playing in other T20 leagues. He said he would like to “go and have fun” in other T20 leagues and was hopeful of getting permission from the Indian cricket board. Singh said that he would have a word with the Indian cricket board after the announcement.
Singh had been the main force behind India’s second World Cup triumph in 2011, for which he received the player of the tournament award. The left-handed batsman scored 362 runs in eight innings, which included four fifties and one century. In the bowling department, Singh took 15 wickets in nine matches and was India’s second highest wicket-taker after Zaheer Khan.
The veteran cricketer has amassed over 11,000 international runs in the 304 ODIs, 40 Tests, and 58 T20Is that he has played. He averaged 33.92 in Test matches, 36.55 in ODIs and 28.05 in T20Is. He also took a total of 148 wickets in all three formats of the game.