One of world cricket's iconic players and a stalwart of Team India Yuvraj Singh announced his retirement from International Cricket on Monday. Fighting back tears, Ending a "rollercoaster" career during which he became the hero of India's 2011 World Cup triumph and fought a gritty battle with cancer, Yuvraj Singh said: "After 25 years, I have decided to move on. Cricket has given me everything and is the reason why I stand here today."
"I was extremely lucky to play 400 games for India. I could have never imagined it when I first started playing cricket," the 37-year-old Yuvraj said addressing the media here.
Reacting on the same, cricketer Mohammad Kaif took to his Twitter handle and wrote: "One of the greatest match-winners in the history of the game,a fighter who built an extraordinary career through difficult challenges & came out a winner every time-We all are so proud of you #YuvrajSingh , u can be very proud of what u have you done for our country @YUVSTRONG12" [sic]
Yuvraj played 40 Tests, 304 ODIs and 58 T20Is for India. He put together 1900 runs in the longest format, and 8701 in the one-dayers, the format in which he enjoyed most success.
"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.
The attacking left-hander listed the the 2011 World Cup triumph, being man of the match in the event's final, getting six sixes in an over against England in the same tournament and his first Test hundred, against Pakistan in Lahore in 2004, as the three most special moments of his career.
The battle with cancer soon after the 2011 World Cup triumph was perhaps the biggest challenge that he encountered.
"I was not going to let that disease defeat me," he said.
However, his cricketing form had been on the wane for a while. Yuvraj last played for India in a T20I against England in 2017. His last Test appearance was back in 2012.
He turned up for Mumbai Indians in this year's IPL but didn't get many chances.
(With inputs from PTI)