5 unforgettable Gautam Gambhir knocks across the formats
Former Indian opener, Gautam Gambhir announced his retirement from all forms of the game on Tuesday (December 4, 2018) thus ending his phenomenal 15-year International career. The southpaw, who made his ODI debut back in April 2003 against Bangladesh at Dhaka, made his Test debut a year later against Australia at Mumbai. Gambhir's contributions with the bat in the finals of both 2007 ICC World T20 and 2011 ICC Cricket World Cup made him the unsung hero of two India's World titles.
The Delhiite also made his mark in the IPL winning two titles with Kolkata Knight Riders. Gambhir, who was the most expensive buy of the 2011 IPL auctions ($2.4 million) with his astounding leadership skills led the Kolkata franchise all the way in the fifth and seven editions of the cash-rich league. Now as he announced his retirement from the Gentleman's game, let us now look at five of his most memorable knocks across the formats.
5) 150*(137) vs Sri Lanka at Kolkata (2009)
It was the fourth game of the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata. On winning the toss, former Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara opted to bat first. Opener Upul Tharanga (118 off 128) and Sangakkara (60 off 72) were the major contributors with the bat for the visitors, as they scored 315/6 in 50 overs. Chasing 316 under the lights is never easy, but the hosts won the game by seven wickets- courtesy Gambhir's valiant 150*(137) and Virat Kohli's sensible 107(114).
It was Virat Kohli's first ever ODI ton as he shared a 224-run third-wicket partnership with Gambhir and made sure the Men in Blue were well on course to chase the 300+ plus target. Gambhir's Man-of-the-match winning knock saw him amass 14 fours on that cold winter evening at the historic Eden Gardens.
Later, Gambhir graciously handed over his Man of the match trophy to a young Virat Kohli for his sensational first ODI century. MS Dhoni's men, who chased down the target of 316 in 48.1 overs clinched the five-match ODI series 3-1. Gambhir's knock of 150* off 137 balls remains to be his highest score in the ODIs.