Sunday, August 19, 2012

VVS Laxman retires from International Cricket

Very Very Special Laxman has announced his retirement from international cricket with immediate effect ending a 16-year career. Laxman represented India in 134 Tests, scoring 8781 runs at 45.97. Laxman made six of his 17 Test centuries against Australia, with an average of 49.67 in 29 Tests and success both home and away. His innings against Australia at Eden Gardens in Kolkata in 2001 with his 281 runs is the greatest achievement, then the highest score by an Indian batsman in Tests. His stand with Rahul Dravid which set up a stunning victory for the home team after following on and ended Australia's consecutive 16-match winning streak is the most memorable match of this era fans. Accidentally his last match also came against Australia. He will be remembered for several innings of extreme elegance under pressure. He is known for his match saving innings. 

I would say his retirement as an end of a glorious chapter of Indian cricket. This graceful batsman has chosen to retire with dignity and kept his pain to himself. He has been constantly criticized for his poor show in last 2 series against England and Australia and also it was said that he is blocking the position young talents. When he was asked about criticism in the emotional press conference, he responded that right from the start of his career there have been a lot of people who wrote negative about him and there have been more people who have been well wishers and talked positive about him. In a country like India, where cricket is more like a religion than a sport, if you try to satisfy each and every one, it's next to impossible.

It is not easy to be a match-winner at any level. Laxman acquired this reputation at the international level. He is an exceptional cricketer, who excelled in pressure situations. If a cricketer’s greatness is to be measured, his performances against the best opposition of his time (Australia) speak for himself. He became the second Indian batsman after Tendulkar to score more than 2000 runs against the Aussies. With Laxman's retirement, only Sachin Tendulkar remains among the golden generation of Indian cricketers after the retirements of all former Indian captains - Anil Kumble, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid.    

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