Pakistan completed its first ever series victory in the Caribbean with a nail-biting 101-run win on Sunday (May 15) against West Indies in Dominica, bidding Younis Khan and Misbah-ul-Haq a farewell in the most fitting way possible.
With only six balls left in the game, and Roston Chase at the other playing a knock of his life, West Indies’ number eleven Shannon Gabriel — who had seen off 21 deliveries to keep his side afloat — inexplicably decided to hit Yasir Shah out of the park. The ball kissed inside edge of his willow and slammed into stumps, leaving Chase stranded on 101 and marking an end to a remarkable resistance that kept Pakistan at bay for hours.
Younis Khan, who walks away from international cricket as Pakistan’s most prolific Test batsman, is now content with what he has achieved in his 17-year long career.
“All the cricket I’ve played – for club, department, association, county, in Australia, wherever – when I’m gone if you ask any of them, they won’t be able to say that Younis Khan left something in the tank. I gave 200% everywhere I played.” Younis said.
“Two-three years ago, I was about to retire but I got the motivation to try and get to 10,000 runs. As a captain, player, junior, senior, I put it all out there, whatever I had. Whatever I could, with bat, ball, in the field. No regrets either. We won a world title, we beat Australia, leveled a series in England. We performed, I performed so there’s nothing left that I really wanted to do.”
The 39-year-old proudly sits on top of the run-scoring chart for Pakistan in Test cricket as he leaves the game, with over 10,000 to his name at a sublime average of just a shade over 52. Younis dismissed the notion that he had regrets for not being made the captain of the national side.
“People say to me, you should’ve done more captaincy. But I think whatever happens, happens for the best. Had I been captain maybe I wouldn’t have scored all these runs.” he said.
“People think that maybe I carry these regrets, but no. Had I done more, who knows whether I would be where I am today? If I had been captain for so long, maybe I would’ve been too distracted by other duties to score as many runs as I did.”
He also added that he has no specific plans to stay in touch with cricket, but hinted pursuing a new chapter in life.
“Believe me – I think, in all, I’ve given 27-28 years of my life to cricket. So I have nothing in my mind about any future plans to get back into cricket. I don’t know if I’ll have any energy left after I leave to give to cricket.
“A lot of the dreams I had which I couldn’t get to while I was playing, I will now pursue. People think you achieve all of them in your career but actually this is a new career starting for me now.” Younis said.
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