Wicketkeeper-batsman Parthiv Patel has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket. In a social media post on Wednesday, Patel said he is "bringing the curtains down on an 18-year-long cricketing journey". Patel, who made his international debut at the age of 17 in an away Test series against England in 2002, played 25 Tests, 38 ODIs and two T20Is for India, his last international appearance coming in the team's famous Test win in Johannesburg in January 2018. He was also part of the squad when India won their first Test series in Australia in 2018-19.
"On this day, as I pause and reflect to assess how far I have come, the biggest wish I have is for my father to have been standing beside me, at the closure of my journey as a cricket player, as he has through most of my life and career," Patel said.
"Today, I announce my retirement from all forms of cricket and as I bring down the curtains on this 18-year-old cricketing journey, I feel heavier with gratitude towards many," he added.
Apart from playing for India, Patel led Gujarat to the Vijay Hazare Trophy in 2015 as he scored a match-winning maiden List A century in the final against Delhi.
He outdid that achievement the next season, when he made 143 against Mumbai to help Gujarat pull off the highest successful run-chase in a Ranji Trophy final.
"The BCCI showed a generous amount of confidence and faith in a 17 year old boy to play for India. I have enormous gratitude towards them for being a guiding force and hand-holding me, in the formative years of my young career," Patel said in his social media post.
"I am full of gratitude to The Gujarat Cricket Association, my home, for solidly rallying around me throughout my journey, and the leadership role conferred upon me couldn't have been more joyous and fulfilling than our team winning all formats of the game," he added.
The left-handed batsman scored over 11,000 runs in 194 first-class games, with 27 centuries and 67 half-centuries.
In the Indian Premier League, the 35-year-old played for six franchises in total. He was part of three title-winning teams - Chennai Super Kings in 2010 and the Mumbai Indians in 2015 and 2017.
He played a total of 139 IPL matches, scoring 2848 runs with the help of 13 half centuries. He was part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore squad in 2020 but was not included in the playing XI for a single game as the team preferred to use AB de Villiers as their first-choice keeper and also used Devdutt Padikkal as opener.
"I feel at peace having played the game in its truest tenets, with dignity and in the spirit of the game and more importantly with great camaraderie. As I walk away as a proud man having fulfilled more dreams than I thought possible, I hope to be remembered with that thought and find your support for my future endeavours," Patel said.
"With every end, comes a new beginning. How lucky I am to have something that makes saying good bye so hard. Until the next timeâ€¦" he concluded.