Harbhajan Singh bids adieu to all forms of cricket

India off-spinner Harbjahan Singh on Friday announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.

In his career, Harbhajan, 41, picked up 417 wickets in 103 Tests, 269 wickets in 236 ODIs and 25 scalps in 28 T20Is.

Taking to twitter, the veteran spinner shared a video and wrote: “All good things come to an end and today as I bid adieu to the game that has given me everything in life, I would like to thank everyone who made this 23-year-long journey beautiful and memorable. My heartfelt thank you, Grateful.”

“My journey from the streets of Jalandhar to become the Turnabator for Team India has been a beautiful one. There is no bigger motivation for me in life than stepping out on the field, wearing the India jersey. There comes a time in life where we have to take a tough decision, you have to move forward in life. I was waiting for the last few years to make this announcement public — I am retiring from all forms of cricket,” Harbhajan said in the video on Friday.

“In my mind, I retired earlier itself but I am making the announcement today. In the last few years, I have not been playing active cricket. But I stayed with Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL due to the commitment I had made. But I had made up my mind to retire during the season,” he added.

Harbhajan had made his debut in the longest format of the game against Australia in Bangalore in 1998 and Greg Blewett was his maiden Test scalp.

In the same year, Harbhajan had earned his maiden ODI cap when India took on New Zealand in April in Sharjah.

In 2001, Harbhajan entered his name in the history books by becoming the first Indian bowler to take a Test match hat-trick as he dismissed Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne at the hostoric Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Notably, VVS Laxman’s 281-run knock had also arrived in the same Test match.

Commenting on it, Harbhajan further said: “I was delighted when I took the hat-trick in Kolkata, I was the first Indian cricketer to take a Test hat-trick. In that series, I picked up 32 wickets in 3 matches, it remains a record till now. After that, the 2007 T20 World Cup and the 2011 World Cup victories remain very important for me. I can’t forget these memories forever in my life. I can’t express in words how much joy those victories brought for me.”

“In this journey, I met a lot of people that very few have the opportunity to. Some of them have become friends and some of them have become family,” he added.

Later in 2012, Harbahan once again managed to rewrite history by bowling two-wicket maiden overs in T20I cricket. The evteran off-spinner returned with scintillating figures of 4/12, helping India hammer England in their final group game of the ICC World T20 2012.

Significantly, before Ravichandran Ashwin had joined the special club of 400 Test wickets, it was Harbhajan who had achieved the feat. Harbhajan had become the first Indian off-spinner to take 400 Test wickets in 2011 against the West Indies.
As of now, Harbhajan is India’s foutth highest wicket-taker with 417 dismissals under his belt.

News Desk

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