Yusuf Pathan, who announced his retirement on Friday, has confirmed that he is keen to partake in T20 franchise competitions across the globe and revealed that he will also be eager to mentor youngsters. Pathan also revealed that he took a conscious decision to pull out of the IPL 2021 auction.
February 26 saw two domestic stalwarts in Indian cricket announce their retirement and one of them was Yusuf Pathan. The elder Pathan, who represented team India 79 times between 2008 and 2012, revealed that he was hanging up his boots, and the announcement came hours after another veteran, Vinay Kumar, also revealed that he was calling it quits. Vinay Kumar’s future remains uncertain, but Yusuf has, however, confirmed that, like his brother, he will be on the lookout to play franchise cricket across the globe.
Speaking to Sportstar, the 38-year-old revealed that he’d been receiving offers to play franchise cricket for close to two years, and felt that it was the right time for him to start a new chapter in his career.
“I have had offers from various franchise leagues across the globe for the last couple of years. But I kept putting them on hold, thinking that I would play another season and then sign off. It was not an easy decision, but I spoke to my family (brother Irfan), Sachin paaji (Tendulkar) and Gautam (Gambhir) and decided that this is the right time to stop,” Yusuf told Sportstar on Friday.
One of the all-time greats in the Indian Premier League, Yusuf last played in the T20 extravaganza in 2019, and, after going unsold last season, did not even register his name in the auction for the 2021 season. The explosive right-hander revealed that, keeping retirement in mind, he took a conscious, difficult decision to opting out of the IPL.
“I will be honest, it was not easy. Last year, I was not picked in the IPL auction and this year, I did not register for the auction because by then, I had already made up my mind. It was definitely a difficult call - there were many sleepless nights. I kept asking myself whether it was the right call? But then, Irfan, my family members and former colleagues helped me immensely to take a decision,” Yusuf said.
Yusuf’s brother, Irfan, has already been doing a fine job as a mentor and now the elder Pathan, too, is keen on overseeing the development of younger players. The 38-year-old revealed that his services will always be available and added that, like his brother Irfan, he, too, wants to mentor youngsters and help them in progressing.
“If anyone needs my service, I will always be available. I will be happy to help the BCA. I would like to help out the young cricketers in whatever way I can. Irfan was with the Jammu and Kashmir team for two seasons, where he played a key role in bringing out young talents. Given an opportunity, even I would like to do a similar thing.”