Indian fast bowler Ashish Nehra had announced his retirement from all forms of the game after the 1st T20I against New Zealand. The match is scheduled to be played at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium, Delhi which is the home ground of the left-arm pacer. He had expressed his desire to the selectors to play his last international game there and that’s why he was picked in the squad for the 1st T20I only.
He had received criticism that he had forced himself into the XI for the last game as he was warming the benches in all the T20Is in the last series against Australia. The chairman of selectors MSK Prasad had also stated that Nehra’s place wasn’t confirmed in the XI for his final game.
But the 38-year-old has hit back at the criticism and replied that he doesn’t care whether he gets picked in the XI or not. “Big people were saying Ashish Nehra has selected himself in the starting XI of the Delhi T20I. It’s the media’s job to sensationalise stuff and pick up controversial things,” he said as quoted by Sportskeeda.
“Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I had clarified with the team management that Delhi has been allotted the match, so I’d like to bow out there. Then people were like he was not in the XI against Australia, why would he make the team against NZ. To them, I say that I don’t care whether I’m a part of the XI or not, the team management and the selectors know that. Whenever India are playing an international match, they’ll definitely go in with their best eleven players,” Ashish Nehra added.
Would have left the game earlier
He added that he would have left the game had the first T20I against New Zealand not been scheduled to be played in Delhi. “Now as far as being a part of the XI against Australia is concerned, I’ve been a regular in the starting line-up (T20I) since making a comeback two years back, so it doesn’t make much of a difference to me. (If Delhi wasn’t allocated the match) 100% I would’ve retired after the Australia series. It’s just because I have gotten the chance to retire at Kotla that I’m doing it,” Nehra concluded.