Former India left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket with immediate effect. Ojha represented India with great distinction, especially in the longest format of the game where he was especially lethal in home conditions.
Announcing his retirement on Twitter, the 33-year old wrote in a statement:
“To be an Indian cricketer and represent the country at the highest level was always a dream I cherished as a youngster. My eventful career has witnessed many ups and downs. Over the time, I have realised that the legacy of a sportsperson is not just the outcome of his hard work and dedication, but also the faith and guidance bestowed upon by the association (team management), teammates, coaches, trainers, and the fans.”
Ojha also mentioned a few special people who played a vital role in his career.
“I am very thankful to Mr. V.V.S Laxman for mentoring me like an elder brother, Mr. Venkatapathy Raju for being the role model I always looked to emulate, Mr. Harbhajan Singh for being a constant adviser and Mr. M.S. Dhoni for providing me with the honorable opportunity to wear the Indian Cap. Lastly, I am certain that looking back at my career will always fill me with a sense of pride. The most memorable moments would be receiving my Test Cap from Mr. Sachin Tendulkar and accomplishing the feat of taking 100 Test wickets. I hope to continue contributing towards the growth of Indian Cricket in every capacity possible.”
A fruitful career
Ojha last played competitively in November 2018 playing first-class cricket for Bihar. He also represented Hyderabad and Bengal on the domestic circuit. Overall, he had a brilliant first-class career, playing 108 matches and picking up 424 wickets.
It was his strong performances at the domestic level which earned him a maiden call-up in the Indian setup. He made his international debut in the ODI format against Bangladesh in 2008. He made his biggest impact in the Test set-up though, playing 24 matches and picking up 113 wickets. He also picked up 21 and 10 wickets in the ODI and T20I formats respectively. He last played a Test match for India against West Indies in November 2013.
Ojha also had a successful career in the IPL, becoming the first spinner to win a purple cap. He played 92 matches in the tournament, picking up 89 wickets, representing Deccan Chargers and Mumbai Indians.