Wanted to play IPL final and end cricket with satisfaction, says Yuvraj

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MUMBAI: Former India power-hitter Yuvraj Singh on Monday said had he been part of Mumbai Indians’ playing XI in the IPL final, he would have ended his cricketing journey with satisfaction.

The 37-year-old, who announced his retirement earlier That day, said, “Lately, I was neither getting success nor opportunity to play. I had spent so much time on the ground and there were other reasons as well. I was confused about how to end my career.”

“We won this IPL but had I got a chance to be part of the XI, I would have left with satisfaction but one doesn’t get everything in life. I started my career in 2000 and it had been 19 years. Last year, I had decided that this year’s IPL would be my last outing and I’ll give it my best shot,” he added.

When asked whether he requested BCCI for ‘one last match’, the Chandigarh-born said he never demanded any retirement game as he does not like to play such cricket.

“I was told if you cannot pass the YOYO Test then you can play a retirement match. Then I replied I don’t want a retirement match and if I can’t pass the test then I will return home silently. I cleared the test but rest was not my call,” he said.

Yuvraj, who always seeks advice from his teammates, said that it was master-blaster Sachin Tendulkar who told him the decision to retire should be his own, and not as per the advice given to him.

“Zak (Zaheer Khan), Ashu (Ashish Nehra), Viru (Virender Sehwag), Bhajji (Harbhajan Singh) and Sachin (Tendulkar) Paaji… I have always consulted them moving on. Especially Sachin during this IPL. He told me that it (retirement) has to come from you, it is you who has to decide when to end not the people,” the swashbuckling left-handed batsman said.

Yuvraj has 8701 runs in 304 One-Day International matches. When asked if he regrets not being able to achieve the 10,000 runs milestone, he said, “Biggest moment in my life was winning 2011 World Cup and Man of the Match. That was a bigger high. I never thought about 10,000 runs as I always thought about winning the World Cup, which was far more special.” 

Mother Shabnam

The decision of Yuvraj Singh to retire from all forms of cricket was his own, said Shabnam Singh, cricketer’s mother, here on Monday. “It was his decision to retire. Well, he has had a good career. He has won all the major tournaments, a very good accomplishment for him. He has done India proud. A mother can only stand in the back and appreciate his son,” Shabnam Singh told ANI.

Yuvraj’s wife Hazel Keech said that she did not understand cricket before meeting Yuvi and said the cricketer has her support for his retirement decision. “As a wife, it is not my place to tell him what to do. He has my full support on the retirement decision. I did not watch cricket before meeting Yuvi. When Yuvi’s cricketing kit arrived in 2014, I saw him crying,” said Keech.

“I didn’t understand the emotion at that point. I guess only cricketers can understand how it is to get picked for the national team,” added Keech.