After Virat Kohli, India captain Rohit Sharma retires from T20Is after historic T20 World Cup 2024 win

Two of India's greatest cricketers – Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma – announced their retirement from T20 International cricket after the team's second T20 World Cup triumph on Saturday. Kohli announced his retirement minutes after the historic win, while India captain Rohit Sharma made the announcement in the official post-match press conference. Rohit, who played a key role in India's victorious campaign, confirmed that he will continue to represent India in ODIs and Tests.

Rohit, whose 92 off 41 balls in the Super 8 encounter against Australia will be remembered for years to come, said he was “desperate” for the title.

“This was also my last match. There couldn't be a better time to say goodbye. I wanted this (trophy) so much. It's very difficult to put it into words,” Rohit said in the post-match press conference after India ended a decade-long title drought. “This is exactly what I wanted and it happened. I was desperate for this in my life. I am happy that we achieved the target this time,” he added.

His announcement came soon after India won their second T20 World Cup title, a victory that brought immense joy and pride to the country.

His retirement brings an end to his illustrious T20I career, during which he became the format's leading run-scorer, amassing 4231 runs in 159 matches. He also holds the record for most centuries in T20Is, with five to his name. His T20I journey began with the inaugural T20 World Cup in 2007, where he was a key player in India's maiden title triumph. Now, as captain, he has led India to their second title, cementing his legacy.

The final match against South Africa was a thrilling one, with India having to defend a target of 176 runs. The Proteas needed 30 runs from the last 30 balls, and looked set to win. However, the Indian bowlers, led by Jasprit Bumrah, Hardik Pandya and Arshdeep Singh, kept their composure in the crucial moments. Pandya especially bowled brilliantly in the final over, successfully defending 16 runs and ensuring a dramatic seven-run victory for India.

The win was particularly special for Rohit, who had experienced both ups and downs in his cricketing career. The victory was a testament to his leadership, resilience and determination. Reflecting on his journey, Sharma said, “I have enjoyed every moment of it. I started my Indian career playing this format. That's all I wanted, I wanted to win the cup.”

Before his retirement, his old teammate Virat Kohli also announced his retirement from T20 Internationals after the World Cup. Both Sharma and Kohli have been pillars of Indian cricket, contributing significantly to many victories over the years.

With IANS and PTI inputs

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