Yesterday was an emotional spectacle at the Feroz Shah Kotla as one of the old boys of Indian cricket Ashish Nehra retired from every form of cricket. Nehra, 39, chose his home ground to be his last step in the cricket field as a player and got a tremendous send off by both his colleagues and supporters.
The ever smiling Indian pacer was even in all smiles while bowling the last ball of his career and also took a lap of honour after the game. Also the Indian team and captain Kohli got emotional while speaking about Nehra ji!
And the player himself also spoke after the match and here is the transcript of what he said-
“I will miss all this. That’s what you train for, “One thing which will definitely be at peace will be my body. I said earlier that I can go a couple more years, but there can’t be a better time to walk away. I must be the one bowler who sent down the last over most number of times for India. But those times were different; there was no pressure today. The game has changed a lot since I started playing. I played my first game here in 1997. The rules have changed and so many runs are being scored. But whatever happens, this team is here to stay. The future of Indian cricket is in safe hands for the next six-seven years.
He played most of his cricket under Sourav Ganguly’s captaincy
I have played under many different people, but it has been a memorable journey. I was telling Viru also this; he scored so many runs, but people still call him Multan ka Sultan, so you are remembered for a particular moment. At times, you pick up wickets off bad balls, but as a cricketer, you in front of a mirror need to realise how well you are playing and what you need to do. There are so many people who asked me if I would have liked to play Test cricket. But you can see the glass as half-full or half-empty. I last played Test cricket when I was 24 or 25, but at the end, to have played for 18 years and to be here standing in blue clothing and to have played my final match, I could not have asked for anything more. I have no regrets. I am always happy, retired or otherwise.”
That spell in Centurion to dismantle England
Nehra has been a character who has shown the world that never giving up against all the odds can take you to heights. He may have the staggering stats, but he has produced some of the best performances for India. As Harsha Bhogle rightly said, “a career beyond numbers.”
Thank You Nehra Ji, Cricket will miss you..