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Sunday, Sep 15, 2019

Ashish Nehra on his retirement: It’s my decision, not selectors’

Ashish Nehra retired from all forms of cricket after India beat New Zealand in the first T20 in New Delhi on Wednesday.

india-vs-new-zealand-2017 Updated: Nov 03, 2017 10:21 IST
Sidharth Gulati
Sidharth Gulati
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Ashish Nehra retired from all forms of cricket on Wednesday.
Ashish Nehra retired from all forms of cricket on Wednesday.(PTI)

Moments after retiring from all forms of cricket, Ashish Nehra denied being communicated by chairman of selectors MSK Prasad that they were considering him only till the New Zealand series.

“I heard this. I don’t know. The chairman of selection committee (Prasad) hasn’t spoken to me about this,” Nehra quipped.

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“You have asked me this question and I can only tell you about my interaction with the team management. When I reached Ranchi, I told Virat about my plan and his first reaction was, ‘Are you sure? Or you can still play IPL, as coach-cum-player’. I said no, I am retiring completely.”

Nehra, who finished with the figures of 0/29 in his final game at the Ferozeshah Kotla which also turned out to be India’s first ever win against New Zealand in T20s, said he never asked the BCCI for a farewell match.

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“Luckily this game happened to be in Delhi. I didn’t ask for a farewell game or anything. This is perhaps one way that God rewarded me for all the hard work I have put in over the last 8-9 years. Virat and coach Ravi Shastri are part of team management -- those are the people I spoke to. I have not spoken to any selector over this issue.”

Prasad had recently made it clear that the selectors were considering him only for the New Zealand series. “I will make it very clear and candid to you,” Prasad had said.

“We all know that communication has been our strong point. We have clearly communicated to the player, Ashish Nehra, and the team management that we are only looking at him till the New Zealand series.”

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But Nehra, who’s known for speaking his mind, denied any such claim and said it was during this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) he felt that Bhuvneshwar Kumar – who wasn’t a certainty in India’s T20 team for most of 2016 due to poor form -- is ready to spearhead the pace attack in limited-overs.

“When I started playing cricket, I didn’t take any selector’s permission. When I am leaving, I am not leaving with their permission. Lot of people have been saying that Ashish Nehra didn’t play in the XI against Australia. When I went there, I went with a plan,” Nehra said.

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“It was during IPL 2017 that I felt Bhuvneshwar Kumar was ready. His form went up and down until this year’s IPL. But after it, I felt that this is the way forward, that as a bowler I would not like to keep playing at the expense of Bhuvi.

First Published: Nov 02, 2017 10:35 IST