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|Robin Singh bids adieu from international cricket|
Saturday, January 24 2004 16:03 Hrs (IST)
Announcing his decision at a press meet in Chennai, Robin Singh said, ''I have no regrets and I was, perhaps, one of the very few to have come back after a seven-year gap at the age of 33 to serve Indian cricket.''
Known for his athleticism, tenacity and commitment, Robin made his debut in the Limited Overs version of the game against the West Indies in Port of Spain in 1988-89.
But after the West Indies tour, he was in the wilderness and staged a comeback in India's 96-97 tour of South Africa, making a mark in the One-dayers. He played his last One-day match against Australia in Visakhapatnam in 2000-01.
The forty-year-old Robin is currently the coach of theIndian cricket Under-19 team.
Born as Rabindra Ramanarayan Singh in the West Indies in September, 1963, the dashing all-rounder made his first class debut in 1982-83 for Trinidad and then represented Tamil Nadu from 1985-86.
The left-handed Robin played in 136 One-dayers for India, making 2336 runs with an 100 against Sri Lanka as his highest for an average of 25.95 said he had lot of good moments to cherish while playing for the country but expressed regret at not being able to play more Tests.
"I was rather unfortunate to have played only in one Test (against Zimbabwe at Harare in 1998-99). I must admit that Mohd Azharuddin persisted for my selection into the One-day team. There must have been instances of my not getting runs,but overall I have done my best for the country.''
''Sachin (Tendulkar) was extremely supportive during my playing days. I have not played much under Sourav. But I appreciate the attitude and approach of the present lot in the Indian team. They are always looking for wins and lookingahead,'' he said.
India's win over Pakistan in Bangladesh for the Asia Cup title was his best moment to cherish.
Asked who his best Indian captain was, Robin said he never required a captain to guide him. ''Playing at number six one has to show his mettle against both pace and spin. I was guiding people rather than a captain guiding me''.
The cricketer, who has played in 99 Ranji Trophy matches for Tamil Nadu, opined that, ''it is rare that not many people make a comeback at 33. Our domestic format are for both Tests and One-dayers.''
Reminiscing, he said, ''The comments of the Indian coach during a South African tour will forever be etched in my memory. I was out for a small score in the first match. Before the second match against Zimbabwe, the coach indicated that it was my last chance. I chipped in well and India tiedthe match. Such comments always motivated me to do better.''
On selection process of teams, he said, ''I do not think one can pick the best team always. Some are not given their due. I always told myself that one has to be sure of making use of a chance."
He described S Sharath of Tamil Nadu as one of the best cricketers in the country ''but he has never got a chance to play for India". A couple of years ago, Sharath was the best in the country as compared to some in the present team. W V Raman could have gone on to play for the country for some more time'' he said. ''However, the ultimate performance of an individualand the positive results of the team are more important.''
Robin thanked the past and present administrators of Indian Cricket for their faith in him. ''I will continue to give back to the game in whatever manner that I am required to'', he added.