U19 World Cup Winner Smit Patel officially retires from all forms of game; to make cricket career in America

Smit Patel had played a crucial role in helping India U19 win the World Cup in 2012.

Smit Patel (Source: Twitter)

Smit Patel, India’s U19 World Cup winner in 2012, has decided to retire from all forms of the game under BCCI’s system. This gives him an opportunity to play in other tournaments outside the country as well. His first stop will be the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) where he will feature for the Barbados Tridents.

After shining in the U19 World Cup 2012, Smit Patel didn’t get ample chances in domestic cricket and had to play for four teams. He played for Gujarat, Tripura, Goa and Baroda in all forms for opportunities. However, he is now set for a cricket career in America. He is a green-card holder which means he can live and work there on a permanent basis.

Smit Patel also confirmed that the formalities with the BCCI are complete and he has sent the letter to the board about his retirement as well. “All this is bound to happen when there’s stifling competition, so I’ve got no complaints. I’m blessed to have played for India at a world event – few get that chance. So I’m moving on with happy memories.

“All my paperwork with the BCCI is complete. I’ve sent in my retirement letter. So the India chapter of my cricket career is over. If I return, it’ll only be to train here for a month or so every year when it’s snowing back in the US,” he said while speaking to ESPNCricinfo.

Patel’s family migrated from Gujarat to Pennsylvania and is living in Easton where his father runs a gas station. This is what led to Smit making a tough decision to leave India and also holds a two-year Major League Cricket (MLC) contract. The tournament has been pushed back to 2023 at the moment due to COVID.

“Yes, having played for 12 years in India, to suddenly pack up and leave can be intimidating. But since my family was already here and they have set themselves up here, the decision was somewhat easier than just having to turn up here and look out for yourself.

“I’d been doing that in India for a decade now – living there to just play cricket and come back here during the off-season. I’d spent nine months of lockdown last year here, and I’ve been back here since April. Also signing up with MLC was a surety that I’m part of a system here,” he further added.

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