Shahbaz Nadeem Retires from Cricket to Focus on T20 Leagues

Shahbaz Nadeem Retires from Cricket to Focus on T20 Leagues

Shahbaz Nadeem, the left-arm spinner from India and Jharkhand, has bid farewell to all forms of cricket in the country. This decision stems from his desire to participate in T20 leagues worldwide, including legends competitions.

"I've been contemplating this decision for a while, and now I've decided to retire from all three formats," Nadeem told ESPNcricinfo. "I've always believed that if you have the motivation to play for India, you'll always push yourself to perform well. However, I recognize that I may not get another chance in the Indian team, so it's best to give younger cricketers a chance. I also intend to play in T20 leagues around the world."

Nadeem, 34, has amassed 542 wickets in first-class cricket, including eight in two Test matches for India. He made his Test debut in Ranchi against South Africa in 2019 and had to wait nearly two years for another opportunity, which proved to be his last. In the IPL, he represented Delhi Daredevils from 2011 to 2018 and Sunrisers Hyderabad from 2019 to 2021, claiming 48 wickets. Despite being acquired by Lucknow Super Giants ahead of IPL 2022, he did not feature in any matches.

"I always put emotions aside when making decisions," Nadeem said. "I've been with the Jharkhand team for 20 years. While we haven't won the Ranji Trophy, we've built a strong team that consistently reaches the knockout stages of the Ranji Trophy and other domestic tournaments. As a result, no one takes the Jharkhand team lightly anymore. I believe it's time to pass the torch to the younger players, and I'm confident they'll bring home trophies in the future."

Nadeem began playing for Jharkhand at the age of 15 and received his India call-up at the age of 30. He was the leading wicket-taker in the Ranji Trophy in 2015-16 (51) and 2016-17 (55). He also finished the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2018-19 with the most wickets (24), including a List-A record spell of 8 for 10 against Rajasthan.

Nadeem was named Player of the Match in Jharkhand's victory in the Vijay Hazare Trophy 2010-11 final, which remains one of his most memorable matches. "Apart from winning the Vijay Hazare Trophy, the most memorable game for me would be the one against Rajasthan. But nothing can compare to playing for India. Looking back on my career, I feel I could have accomplished more, but I'm content."

Nadeem expressed his gratitude to his childhood coach, Imtiaz Hussain, saying, "He taught me how to bowl. I still seek his advice on my bowling. I'll never forget how much S Rahman of Indigo Club assisted me. I've been able to continue my cricket journey for so many years because of these individuals and my family."

Nadeem joins Saurabh Tiwary and Varun Aaron (only red-ball cricket) as the third Jharkhand player to announce his retirement this Ranji Trophy season, in which he claimed 23 wickets, the most for Jharkhand.

Tags: #ShahbazNadeem, #Retirement, #Cricket, #T20Leagues, #Jharkhand

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