6 Indian cricketers who announced retirement at least a couple of years after their last international game
Retirement is a tricky decision. Everyone cricketer who plays for his country wants to finish on a high, with one final hurrah. However, not everyone is as lucky as say a Sachin Tendulkar.
Many Indian cricketers who play with distinction for the country get dropped due to lack of form or fitness or the age factor. While some choose to give up, others go back to the hard grind of domestic cricket, to try and break open the door to international cricket yet again. Some succeed while others realize that they have reached a dead end, and hang up their boots.
Presently, there is talk surrounding veteran off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, with reports claiming he might finally announce his retirement from international cricket to take part in the inaugural season of England’s ‘The Hundred’. However, there is no official confirmation of this same yet.
Harbhajan last played for India in 2016. At 39, it is highly unlikely that he will represent the country again.
In this feature, we take a look at 6 Indian cricketers who announced their retirement at least a couple of years after they last played for the national team.
#6 Gautam Gambhir
The hero of India’s 2007 World T20 and 2011 World Cup triumphs called it a day in December 2018.
After a consistent run in the Indian team from 2007 to 2012, the left-hander began losing form as his weakness outside the off-stump was exploited by bowlers around the world. He made a couple of comebacks in 2014 and 2016, but managed only one fifty in his last five Tests.
Gambhir’s last international match was the Test against England at Rajkot in November 2016.
He finished his career with 4154 runs in 58 Tests averaging 41.95, and 5238 runs in 147 ODIs at an average of 39.68. In all he scored 20 international hundreds - 9 in Tests and 11 in ODIs.
Further, in 37 T20s, Gambhir managed 932 runs with a highest of 75 - in the 2007 World T20 final.
The former cricketer has since entered politics, and is a BJP MP from East Delhi.
#5 Virender Sehwag
Gambhir’s long-time opening partner also retired a while after he played his last international match. In fact, Gambhir and Sehwag had a similar end to their international careers as both lost form almost simultaneously.
After scoring a Test hundred in Ahmedabad against England in November 2012, Sehwag only managed a highest of 30 in his last six Tests. The Test against Australia at Hyderabad in March 2013, in which he managed only six, turned out to be his last international match. India won the Test by an innings and 135 runs.
With no comeback in sight, Sehwag announcement his retirement from international cricket in October 2015. He finished with 8586 runs from 104 Test matches with 23 Test hundreds, and 8273 runs with 15 centuries in ODIs. In 19 T20s, he scored 394 runs.
Sehwag still holds the records for the highest Test score by an Indian - 319. He also has an ODI double hundred to his name and is the only Indian cricketer with two Test triple hundreds. These days he dabbles in commentary, and is known for his wit on Twitter.
Also see – World Test Championship Schedule