On Wednesday, veteran domestic cricketer Rajat Bhatia hung his boots from all forms of cricket with immediate effect. Rajat Bhatia made his first-class debut in 2000 and went on to play 112 fixtures in the format, scoring 6482 runs and picking up 137 wickets. In an interview with IANS, the all-rounder opened up on his most memorable moment.
Rajat Bhatia was part of Delhi’s domestic side that lifted the Ranji Trophy title in 2008. In the final, Bhatia crafted an imperious knock of 139, which was one of his 17 centuries in his career. As far as List A cricket goes, the 40-year old featured in 119 games, scoring 3038 runs and taking 93 scalps. Apart from that in 95 IPL matches, the Delhi cricketer took 71 wickets at an economy rate of 7.41.
Rajat Bhatia told IANS that he sent a mail to BCCI and DDCA about his intention to retire from all forms of cricket. He stated that he was supposed to call it a day from professional cricket last September since he was not featuring in domestic cricket. However, he wanted to take his time as Rajat Bhatia was playing as a professional in Bangladesh before things changed. His last competitive cricket appearance arrived in Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League, playing four List A fixtures.
“Yes, I made the decision to retire from all forms of cricket in the morning. I have sent a mail to the BCCI and to DDCA as well. I was supposed to retire from the game in September 2019 because I was not playing domestic cricket last year. But I thought I could still wait as I was playing as a professional in Bangladesh. But then things changed there and I got to know that they will not take any professionals,” the 41-year old stated.
Rajat saw his daughter’s birthday as the best day, which he considers as a special one. Due to that, he wanted to call his retirement on that day, which continues to be memorable for a long time.
“So, I thought this is the best time to take retirement because it’s a special day for me as it’s my daughter’s birthday. Hence, I decided why not take this decision on a day which I can remember,” he added.
Rajat Bhatia reveals a special moment of his career:
The Delhi-born cricketer mentioned that as a player, he will always remember taking the wicket of Sachin Tendulkar thrice in the cash-rich league. Rajat was part of title-winning sides twice – with Rajasthan Royals in 2008 and Kolkata Knight Riders in 2012. In all, Rajat featured in 146 T20 clashes, managing 1251 runs and snapping 111 scalps.
“As an individual, I will always remember taking Sachin Tendulkar’s wicket three times in the IPL,” Bhatia said.