Which cricketers had the saddest ending to their career?

In this article, we will take a look at the cricketers who had the saddest ending to their career and most tragic departures of leading cricket players. 

Apart from the heart-wrenching defeats and glorious triumphs, it’s the unpredictability of cricket that keeps millions of viewers entwined in the gentlemen’s game. The storied historical past of cricket has witnessed the highs and lows of numerous players, some of which have remained etched in the hearts of cricket aficionados. From unfortunate injuries to heated controversies, the bitter-sweet symphony of cricket has witnessed many dashed dreams and untimely retirements of numerous potential cricket players worldwide. 

Mark Boucher 

The South African cricketer, Mark Boucher, holds the record for the highest number of dismissals in all forms of international cricket. Boucher’s illustrious cricketing career came to an end with a phenomenal total of 998 dismissals in international cricket, including 555 dismissals in 147 test matches that he played. While playing against Somerset in 2012, Boucher got severely injured. Imran Tahir’s fierce googly delivery managed to hit the stumps at a blistering speed, causing a bail to strike Boucher directly in the eye. The South African was seen groaning in pain and was later diagnosed with a lacerated eyeball. After undergoing three-hour-long surgery, Mark Boucher announced his heart-breaking retirement from the game.

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Phillip Hughes

The Australian opening batsman, Phillip Hughes, became a popular name in international cricket after smashing his maiden test century at the young age of 20. While Hughes was anticipated to evolve as one of the most promising and dependable batsmen in Australian cricket, he unfortunately lost his life to a tragic bowling accident. While playing a domestic match at the Sydney cricket ground in 2014, Phillip Hughes was fatally struck in his neck below the helmet by a deadly bouncer from Sean Abbott, causing a subarachnoid hemorrhage. The Australian opening batsman was immediately rushed to the hospital but, unfortunately, couldn’t regain consciousness and passed away two days later from his tragic accident leaving his fans and Australian cricket team in disbelief and heart-wrenching pain.  

Navjot Singh Sidhu 

Often recognized by his on-field monikers “Sixer Sidhu” and Jonty Singh”, retired Indian cricketer, Indian politician and former president of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, Navjot Singh Sidhu made his cricket debut in 1987 against Services for Punjab in Amritsar and witnessed an illustrious cricketing career spanning over nineteen years. Sidhu grabbed huge fame for smashing four half-centuries in five matches during the 1987 World Cup. According to reports, despite his significant contributions to Indian cricket, Sidhu fell prey to the repugnant team politics. Sidhu’s differences with the captain Mohammad Azharuddin eventually resulted in him getting dropped off from India’s 1996 tour of England. Unveiling the drama behind the curtains of the Indian team’s dressing room, Sidhu, in an interview, revealed that Azharuddin used to abuse him on-field and make offensive comments. Additionally, due to his poor performance in the New Zealand tour of 1998–99, Sidhu was dropped from the test series against Pakistan. In 1999, Navjot Singh Sidhu announced his early retirement from all forms of cricket.

Henry Olanga 

The former Zimbabwean fast bowler, Henry Olanga, made his test debut in 1995 and became the youngest individual and first black player to ever play for the Zimbabwean cricket team. Olanga has been a part of three World Cup tournaments in the years 1996, 1999 and 2003. It was during the 2003 World Cup tournament that Henry Olanga got trapped in a fuming controversy when he wore a black armband openly expressing his frustration with the forceful breakdown of democracy in Zimbabwe. The action did not only keep him away from the crucial cricket tournaments, but his country also attempted to arrest Olanga for treason. At the age of 26, while he was at the apex of his international cricketing career, Henry Olanga announced his tragic retirement from international cricket.

Shanthakumaran Nair Sreesanth

Often regarded as one of the most dynamic and gifted bowlers of the Indian team, former Indian cricket player and actor Shanthakumaran Nair Sreesanth has witnessed an extremely turbulent cricket career. During his cricketing career, Sreesanth played a total of 53 ODIs, 10 T20Is and 27 test matches.  Sreesanth was at the apex of his cricketing career when he was convicted of the spot-fixing scandal during the IPL 2013 season. Although initially Sreesanth was handed a life ban by the BCCI, it was later reduced to a span of seven years. Unfortunately, even after the ban was lifted, Sreesanth wasn’t given any dreamy comeback opportunities. With the strong support of the state cricket association, he could only play for the Kerala team in the Ranjhi Trophy. The former star of Indian cricket, Shanthakumaran Nair Sreesanth has often been teary-eyed talking about his early and unfortunate departure from Indian cricket.