New Delhi: All-rounder Yusuf Pathan, who was part of India's two World Cup-winning teams, on Friday announced retirement from all forms of cricket saying time has come "to put a full stop to this innings of my life."
A hard-hititng batsman and effective off-spinner, 38-year-old Pathan was part of the Indian teams that won the 2007 T20 World Cup in South Africa and the 2011 World Cup in India. MS Dhoni was captain of both teams.
"I officially announce retirement from all forms of the game. I thank my family, friends, fans, teams, coaches and the whole country wholeheartedly for all the support and love. I am sure you will continue to encourage me in future as well," Pathan, who represented Baroda in domestic tournaments, said in a statement posted on Twitter.
The Baroda-based Pathan's last appearance with the Indian team was in a T20 international against South Africa in Johannesburg on March 30, 2012.
After making his international debut during the 2007 T20 World Cup, against Pakistan in Johannesburg, Pathan played 22 T20Is in which he scored 236 runs at a strike-rate of 146.58 and picked 13 wickets.
He also played 57 ODIs for India, scoring 810 runs at a strike-rate of 113.60 with two hundreds and three fifties and taking 33 wickets.
Pathan, who was also a handy off-spinner, is one of the few players to feature in 100 first-class matches apart from playing 199 List A and 274 T20 matches at the domestic level.
He was a part of Kolkata Knight Riders' triumphs in the Indian Premier League and last played for India in 2012.
"I still remember the day when I wore the India jersey for the first time. I didn't only wear the jersey that day, but I took upon my family's, coach's, friends the whole country's and my own expectations on my shoulders as well," Pathan recalled.
"Winning two World Cups for India and lifting Sachin Tendulkar on my shoulders were some of the best moments of my career. I made my international debut under M S Dhoni, IPL debut under Shane Warne, Ranji debut under Jacob Martin and would like to thank them for believing in me," he added.
He had been going unsold in the past two IPL players' auctions.
Recalling the World Cup-winning moments, Pathan thanked former India opener and his IPL captain at KKR, Gautam Gambhir, and Irfan, his brother calling him his "backbone".
"I thank Gautam Gambhir with whom, at KKR, we won the IPL trophy twice. I would also like to thank my brother and backbone Irfan Pathan who was always there for me during the highs and lows of my career.
"Last but not the least, I would like to thank the BCCI and BCA for giving me the opportunity to play for my country and state."
"Nothing can keep me away from cricket and my passion for the sport will remain the same. I will continue to entertain everyone even in future." Alongside his statement on retirement, he also posted pictures of him hugging cricket icon Tendulkar and standing with younger brother Irfan.
Besides KKR, he also played for Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL while winning the trophy thrice.
In 174 IPL matches, Yusuf scored 3204 runs at a strike-rate of close to 143 with a hundred and 13 fifties apart from picking 42 wickets.
He also owns the record for the fastest century by an Indian in the IPL and won the Man of the Match award 16 times in the lucrative league, the third most among Indian players.
Pathan hit more than 300 sixes in professional cricket, once scoring an unbeaten 210 in a 536-run chase in a Duleep Trophy match during the 2009/10 season.