One of India’s most successful fast bowlers in domestic cricket, Pankaj Singh at 36, has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.
Pankaj made his domestic debut for Rajasthan way back in 2004 at 19 years of age and was the mainstay of their bowling attack. Tall with good pace and with the capability to move the ball off the seam Pankaj was outstanding in the domestic circuit getting an astounding figure of 472 wickets. His consistency helped him to get selection to the Indian squad for the Australian tour in 2007 but he did not get a chance as Ishant Sharma and RP Singh was preferred for the tests.
Pankaj was on the fringes of Indian selection till luck smiled on him in the 2014 test series in England when at the age of 29, he replaced injured Ishant Sharma in the 3rd test.
However bitter luck deserted him. He troubled Alistair Cook and finally induced an edge off him only for the sitter to be dropped in the slips. He bowled his heart out beating the bat and hitting the batsmen on the pads but none of his lbw appeals was upheld. He ended with only 2 wickets in the 2 tests and never played test cricket again probably due to the age factor.
He also played a solitary ODI for India and went wicketless.
Pankaj played for RCB in the IPL and took 11 wickets in 17 games in a short IPL career.
However, his durability continued in domestic cricket. He moved from Rajasthan to Pondicherry in the 2018-19 season and took 45 wickets in that season at a staggering average of 9.15. He did not play the following season due to an injury but placed in the Vijay Hazare trophy and Syed Musthaq Ali trophy in the last season before calling it quits.
Stating that receiving the test cap for India was the best moment for his career, Pankaj is now poised to start a career in coaching.
“I have done level-2 coaching and I definitely want to start coaching teams. Now that I have formally retired, I can think about that. I will assess things and see how it goes.” Pankaj Singh said.
We congratulate Pankaj Singh for his cricketing achievements and wish him well on his future journey.