Shoaib Malik announces retirement from ODIs

His team-mates give him an apt guard of honour

London: Ace Pakistan cricketer Shoaib Malik announced his retirement from ODI cricket on Friday. Malik announced his decision after Pakistan officially bowed out of World Cup last night. He justified saying this will give him more time for family and focus on T20s.

The 37-year-old had said last year that he will retire from ODIs after Pakistan’s last match in current World Cup. The stacks of Pakistan making it to semis were heavily stacked against them. Even though they beat Bangladesh by 94 runs they were eliminated.

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In his long and illustrious career, Shoaib Malik represented Pakistan in 35 Tests, 287 ODIs and 111 T20Is. He was most successful in 50-over format having scored 7543 runs and bagged 158 wickets.

Even though he was not in the playing XI in his last match, he did come on to the field for a while. And he was given a fitting send-off.

At a post-match press conference, Malik said, “I am retiring from ODI cricket. I had made this decision a few years ago, that I would retire after Pakistan’s last World Cup match.”

“I am sad to be leaving a format I once loved but I am happy that I will now get to spend more time with my family. This will also allow me to focus on T20s,” said Malik, bringing the curtains down on an ODI career that lasted two decades. Malik made his ODI debut in October 1999.

Shoaib Malik is married to Indian tennis sensation Sania Mirza. They had a baby boy very recently.

Shortly after the match, Malik took to Twitter to thank his family, friends, coaches, and fans for the love and support that they have showered on him all these years.

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