Abhishek Nayar: The Man who Earned Mumbai Ranji Trophies on several occasions

Despite being a consistent performer in First-Class cricket, Abhishek Nayar was unable to bring his talent out for the Indian National Team as he failed to make an impact in the three ODIs he played for the country

Abhishek Nayar: The Man who Earned Mumbai Ranji Trophies on several occasions

Cricket is a gentleman's game but it can be harsh on a player sometimes despite his attitude and inclination towards the sport. In one such instance, veteran all-rounder Abhishek Nayar, who was instrumental in many of Mumbai's Ranji Trophy triumphs in the millennium, recently announced his retirement from first-class cricket.

Nayar had said that he provided his retirement letter to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) when he was in the West Indies where he had gone to help the Trinbago Knight Riders in the Caribbean Premier League last month, informing them of his decision to quit the game.

A Fine First-Class Player

To understand Nayar's plight it is vital to understand that he has been crucial for Mumbai in winning various Ranji Trophies throughout an illustrious career of 15 years. A reliable left-handed batsman and a seam bowler, the 36-year-old played 99 first-class games, before he was dropped during the 2017-18 season by Mumbai. Nayar then shifted to Puducherry, for whom he played in his last four First-Class games, taking five for 76 against Sikkim in his last FC innings.

A Short Stint With National Cricket

Nayar represented India in just three ODIs under MS Dhoni's captaincy in 2009, but his first-class magic did not work as he was unable to pick up a wicket or score a run, and was subsequently dropped for good. But, Nayar continued to be a hero in his first-class career, in which he scored 5,749 runs in 103 matches at an average of 45.62, with 13 centuries and 32 fifties under his belt. His highest score was 259. He took 173 wickets at an average of 31.47, with six five-wicket hauls.

No Regrets for Nayar

Even after playing 99 games for Mumbai and failing to represent the team in the 100th first-class game, Nayar has no regrets. 

At the end of the day, I've no regrets in my career, not even the fact that I couldn't play my 100th first-class game for Mumbai. After all, how many players get to play 99 games for Mumbai? I'm lucky that I played 99. Not playing that one game doesn't change the way I look at the 99 games I played for Mumbai. I'm extremely happy and content with my career, and Mumbai cricket will always have a special place close to my heart. I know what it takes to be a part of that dressing room," Nayar said.

A New Abhishek Nayar

As Nayar bids farewell to the responsibilities as a player, Abhishek Nayar, the coach has emerged recently. Since July last year, Nayar has been the lead coach and mentor of the Kolkata Knight Riders academy in Bengaluru.

However, from this season though, he has been named as the assistant coach of the side, with former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum being the head coach. For the last few years, he has mentored quite a few international players like Dinesh Karthik and Shreyas Iyer.

So after an illustrious career as a player, it would noteworthy to watch Nayar donning the coach's jersey and taking on a new responsibility.

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