New Delhi: Fast bowler Joginder Sharma, who registered his name in the minds of cricket fans after bowling India to victory in the inaugural Men’s T20 World Cup in 2007, has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.
“Today with immense gratitude and humility I announce my retirement from all forms of International and domestic cricket. My journey from 2002 to 2017 has been the most wonderful years of my life, honour representing India level of sport,” he wrote in a letter addressed to BCCI secretary Jay Shah through his social media accounts on Friday.
Sharma had represented India in four ODIs and as many T20Is from 2004 to 2007, picking five wickets across both formats. In the Indian Premier League (IPL), he represented Chennai Super Kings in the first four seasons, picking 12 wickets in 16 matches.
But he is most remembered for his last-over heroics in the T20 World Cup final against Pakistan in Johannesburg. Tasked to bowl the final over by captain M.S. Dhoni in the match, Joginder had to defend six runs off four balls with one wicket remaining.
He then got Misbah-ul-Haq to miscue the scoop to S Sreesanth at short fine leg to help India win the final by five runs and lift the trophy, which is one of the most iconic moments in the history of Indian cricket.
“I am grateful for the opportunities given to me by the BCCI wicket Association Chennai Super Kings and the Haryana government to all my teammates coaches Mentors and support staff absolute privilege to have played with you all for helping turn my dream into reality.”
“To all cricket fans that have supported me through the ups and downs of International sport: I will forever cherish the moments I spent with you all. Your support has always been a source of motivation for me.”
“Lastly, I would like to thank my family and friends for their conditional love and support throughout my career they have been my backbones and without them, I would not have been able to achieve what I have today,” he further wrote.
49 first-class matches
Sharma featured for Haryana in domestic cricket, playing 49 first-class matches, 39 List-A matches and 43 T20s. He last played for them in the 2017 Vijay Hazare Trophy and of late, served as a deputy superintendent of police (DSP) in the Hisar district of Haryana, while being involved in fighting against Covid-19 when the pandemic gripped the world.
Recently, he had played in the 2022 season of the Legends Cricket League.
“I am excited to announce that I will be exploring new opportunities in the world of cricket & the business side of it, where I will also continue to participate in the sport that I love and challenge myself in a new and different environment. I believe that this is the next step in my journey as a cricketer and I look forward to this new chapter in my life.”