Wasim Jaffer retires from all formats of cricket

The Mumbai cricketer decided to hang up his boots after nearly 25 years of professional cricket.

Former Indian cricket team opener and ten-time Ranji Trophy winner, Wasim Jaffer announced his retirement from all formats of cricket on Saturday.

The 42-year-old called time on his illustrious career of more than two decades that saw him ply his trade for the Indian cricket team, Mumbai and Vidarbha.

"My longest association was with the Mumbai team and it's here that I learned about the khadoos nature of cricket that Mumbai players are known for," said Wasim Jaffer, who scored nearly 20,000 runs in first-class cricket.

"I feel privileged to have shared the Mumbai dressing room with Sachin (Tendulkar), Vinod Kambli, Zaheer Khan, Amol Muzumdar, Nilesh Kulkarni, to name few.

"After becoming the captain in 2008, I hope I passed on some legacy to Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Suryakumar Yadav, Aditya Tare and others," he added.

His captaincy of the Mumbai cricket team led to two Ranji Trophy titles.

Wasim Jaffer shot to limelight at the young age of 15 when he scored 400 runs in a Giles Shield match and has never looked back since. He followed the footsteps of Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar to become another Mumbaikar to represent the nation at the highest level.

The Test specialist made his first-class debut for Mumbai in 1996 and went on to win the Ranji Trophy eight times with them before moving to Vidarbha for the 2015-16 season. He also played an instrumental role in Vidarbha's first-ever Ranji Trophy title in 2017-18 and also helped the team defend the title next season.

His love for batting under the sun and hunger for runs at every level of cricket saw him end his career as the highest run-getter in Ranji Trophy with a mammoth 12,038 runs. He became the first player to feature in 150 Ranji matches and also holds the record for the most centuries with 40.

The old-school right-hander represented India in 31 Tests, scoring nearly 2,000 runs with five centuries and 11 fifties and shared the dressing rooms with the greats of the era, including present-day BCCI president Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar, who is currently the League Ambassador of T20 Mumbai among other things.

"Among moments I will cherish the most is getting my India Test cap, scoring 202 vs Pakistan, 212 vs West Indies and winning the Test series in West Indies and England in 2006-07," Was Jaffer said in his statement.

"What can I say about Sachin? I could go on and on about him," Wasim Jaffer reminisced. "He was my role model. Feel really blessed to have watched him play from such close quarters. In my opinion, he was one of the best players of that era along with Brian Lara."

Sachin Tendulkar paid his tribute to the Mumbai stalwart citing that it was time to celebrate his career.

"He was a special player. What he has achieved as a player is fantastic," Sachin Tendulkar said. "For any player to be able to play for such a long time and perform consistently well is a testament to his commitment and dedication. Wasim's strength has been his temperament.

"He has been a fantastic ambassador for cricket. His contribution to Mumbai cricket has been incredible," he pointed out.

Wasim Jaffer also offered his expertise as a mentor to the Shivaji Park Lions during the second season of T20 Mumbai.

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