Bengaluru: The Indian film industry is mourning the loss of one of the finest actors, Irrfan Khan, who breathed his last today (April 29) at the age of 53. Before he became an acclaimed actor, Irrfan had an ambition to pursue cricket career but had to give up as he could not afford Rs 600.

Also read: When Irrfan Khan praised Dhoni, spoke about his favourite cricketers

Irrfan had acted in Bollywood, Hollywood and British films. He was a National Award winner. His acting in Paan Singh Tomar brought him the national accolade in 2013.

Also read: Virat Kohli's tribute to Irrfan Khan

In an interview, Irrfan had recalled the tough days when he had to bid adieu to his cricket career even after getting selected to play in the BCCI’s Col. CK Nayudu Trophy (Under-23).

“I played cricket. I wanted to become a cricketer. I was an all-rounder and the youngest one in my team in Jaipur. I wanted to make a career out of it,” Irrfan had told The Telegraph newspaper in 2014.

Also read: Cricketers pay rich tributes to Irrfan Khan

The Angrezi Medium actor continued, “I was selected for the CK Nayudu tournament I think and then I needed money and didn’t know who to ask. That day I decided I cannot pursue it.

“I couldn’t have asked for Rs 600 at that time. I needed Rs 300 for National School of Drama, which was difficult for me. My sister finally got it for me. Giving up cricket was a conscious decision. There are only 11 players in the whole country. Actors mein koi limit nahin hain! There is no age limit in acting… jitna mehnat karoge....You yourself are your own weapon.”

In the same interview he said he loved watching football and also tennis with Spain’s Rafael Nadal being his favourite.

Today, Indian cricketers including batting legend Sachin Tendulkar, national team captain Virat Kohli and others paid rich tributes to Irrfan. Kohli described Irrfan as “phenomenal talent” while Tendulkar said he had watched all of Irrfan’s movies including his last one, Angrezi Medium.