'I don't know (if there are any regrets). I have always played the game with passion'
Stating that he was forced to retire from international cricket in order to get a No Objection Certificate to play in the Masters Champions League, veteran West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul has warned that such shabby treatment by selectors is a worrying sign for future cricketers.
"I was given a No Objection Certificate by WICB (West Indies Cricket Board) with a clause in it that I retire on the 23rd (January)," Chanderpaul told a ESPNcricinfo.
"If I didn't announce my retirement they would have taken it back."
Last May, the 41-year-old batsman was dropped ahead of the two-Test series against Australia, with the selectors saying his 'rapid' decline in form was the reason behind his axing.
Chanderpaul, who made his Test debut against England in March, 1994, rued the fact that he was not given the chance to 'retire properly' following more than two decades of international career for the West Indies, sending a negative message to up-and-coming players.
"I wanted one last opportunity to play against Australia before signing off, but (I) can't do anything about it. Just want to put that behind me," Chanderpaul was quoted as saying by Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).
"I got the NOC to play in Master Champions League after retiring from international cricket. Having played for so long, I feel I should have been treated well. If a player (like me) is treated like that, then think how the younger generation will be treated.
"Being treated like ordinary school boys. Nobody would come and say that you like so and so. You are always treated that way. These things will happen," Chanderpaul, who is in Dubai to play for Gemini Arabians in the inaugural Masters Champions League, said.
The left-handed batsman scored 11,867 runs at an average of 51, including 30 centuries, in an illustrious career of 164 Tests to finish in second place, behind the legendary Brian Lara (11,953 runs) on the all-time list of West Indies run-scorers.
His form dipped in two series -- first during a three-Test tour of South Africa in 2014-15, where he managed 91 runs, and then the three-Test series with England last April when he scored 92 runs.
However, Chanderpaul feels he could have scored more Test runs.
"I thought I could have gone on for a while, given more series and retired properly," he said.
"It's been a great run throughout the two decades. I am thankful for all the opportunities I got. I enjoyed playing all the formats for that long."
Talking about his long career, he said, "It probably could have been better in some areas but my career has been great since I was a school kid. Then there were things you expect from certain people but sometimes you have to put things behind and look ahead.
"I don't know (if there are any regrets). I have always played the game with passion. I have enjoyed it. I don't know if I have any regrets."