Yes, as you rightly read!!! Unmukt Chand, the U-19 World Cup-winning Indian captain has taken retirement at the age of 28. Due to the lack of opportunities to play in the Indian Domestic circuit and with the ever-increasing competition, this was expected to happen. After announcing retirement Unmukt is now a freelance cricketer. He is expected to play a few domestic T20 leagues in the USA.
The retirement announcement: –
This news was given to the common people by Unmukt on the 13th of August. It was a shocker!! A budding star who could have been the next, “Virat Kohli” has retired. This retirement just defines the kind of saturation that India has in terms of cricketing talent. With his teammate from the U-19 squad, Smit Patel announcing a similar retirement just a few months back, this was somewhat expected. Year after year Chand failed to make a mark in the domestic circuit and eventually got sidelined.
The domestic performances: –
Unmukt first came busting on the scene back in the year 2011. It was due to his consecutive 50s and 100s at the U-19 stage. First India won a quadrangular series under his captaincy and then went on to win the U-19 World Cup as well. After seeing his performance at age-group cricket, he was awarded the CEAT Youngster of the Year! He then went on to represent the Delhi Ranji and Vijay Hazare Squads for 4-5 years on the trot. Apart from this Unmukt also played for the Delhi Daredevils in the IPL in the year 2013. He then went to the franchise from Mumbai and then on was sidelined once again. The Delhi boy also represented India A in a few tour games. He was definitely a big match player considering that he scored quickfire 50s and 100s in knockout matches of tournaments.
Writers View: –
As a critic and a writer, I would say that Unmukt has made a sound decision. And as members of the cricket community, it is our responsibility to back the same. As a bread earner of the family, if Unmukt is not getting any game time, it eventually means that his income too might have been reduced. Considering the immense talent that the nation has and the kind of saturation it has reached, moving to another country makes complete sense. Rather than playing at a low pay scale for smaller teams, Unmukt has a brighter future in the US.