Sachin Tendulkar to retire after 200th Test

NEW DELHI: Sachin Tendulkar on Thursday announced his decision to retire from Test cricket after playing his landmark 200th match against the West Indies next month, bringing an end to the intense speculation about his future.

Profile: Sachin Tendulkar

The 40-year-old Tendulkar, who has not been in the best of form in recent times, has informed the BCCI about his decision to quit Test cricket after a glorious career spanning 24 years.

“All my life, I have had a dream of playing cricket for India. I have been living this dream every day for the last 24 years. It’s hard for me to imagine a life without playing cricket because it’s all I have ever done since I was 11 years old.

“It’s been a huge honour to have represented my country and played all over the world. I look forward to playing my 200th Test Match on home soil, as I call it a day,” Tendulkar, who has already retired from the ODIs, said in the released issued by BCCI Secretary Sanjay Patel.

Tendulkar thanked the BCCI for its support throughout his career and also for allowing to walk into Test sunset at a time of his choosing.

“I thank the BCCI for everything over the years and for permitting me to move on when my heart feels it’s time! I thank my family for their patience and understanding. Most of all, I thank my fans and well-wishers who through their prayers and wishes have given me the strength to go out and perform at my best,” he said.

There was intense pressure on Tendulkar to bid adieu to Test cricket after a prolonged form slump and particularly with the advent of a number of young players.

Tendulkar’s 200th Test match is most likely to be held at his home ground in Mumbai from November 14. The Eden Gardens in Kolkata is also a contender for hosting that historic match. The BCCI has not yet announced the venues for the two Tests against the West Indies.

The fact that the BCCI squeezed in a home series against the West Indies had raised speculation that it was done to give Tendulkar the opportunity to retire in front of his home fans.

Although Tendulkar had always maintained that he would continue playing cricket as long as he enjoys playing the game, the pressure of playing at the international level has gradually taking a toll on his ageing body.

He recently retired from the IPL and the Champions League T20 event after his franchise Mumbai Indians won both the titles this year.

Although the decision to retire was in the offing for some time, the BCCI release did create a flutter, prompting many former Test crickets to pay glorious tributes to the champion batsman who virtually held every batting record.

Tendulkar has been the most complete batsman of his time and the most prolific run maker of all time. His 198 Test appearances yielded 15,837 runs at an average of 53.86. From his 463 ODI matches, he had, under his belt, a whopping 18,426 at an average of 44.83.

He is the only batsman to score 100 international centuries — 51 in Tests and 49 in ODIs.

Much before his debut on November 15, 1989 against Pakistan, Tendulkar’s precocious talent was there to be seen when he shared an unbeaten 664-run stand with buddy Vinod Kambli in the Lord Harris Shield Inter-School Game in 1988.

His first Test century came in England in 1990 at Old Trafford and the Mumbaikar rose in stature after the 1991-92 tour of Australia, hitting sublime hundreds on a Sydney turner and a Perth minefield.

Tendulkar was also the first batsman in the world to score a double ton in ODIs, a feat he achieved in Gwalior against South Africa in February 2010. This was included in Times magazine’s top 10 sports moments of the year.

A perfect team-man, Tendulkar limited his Twenty20 ambition to the Indian Premier League, ruling himself out of national reckoning lest it upsets the existing equilibrium of the side.

The biggest compliment to his batting came from Bradman himself in 1999 when he said that Tendulkar’s style of playing resembled his style.

His 154 scalps in ODIs underline the fact that Tendulkar could have also staked claim to be that elusive all-rounder that India has been desperately looking for since the legendary Kapil Dev.

In the field, he is among the safest pair of hands in the slip and his flat throw releasing strong arm saw him manning the deep with equal aplomb. He has taken 114 catches in Test cricket and 140 in the ODIs.

  1. cr7 9 years ago

    i will miss him . Greatest batsman ever.It was a always a pleasure to see him bat .

  2. mate 9 years ago

    Not the greatest ever, but surely one of the greatest in each form of cricket. In ODIs, I rank V.Richards, B.Lara, R.Ponting, S.Anwar and M.Bevan above him, in that order. In Test cricket, he is at 3rd spot after D.Bradman and B.Lara, IMO.

  3. Anjanpur685Miles 9 years ago

    Salute to the God, the only other existence of him on earth after Aamir.

    PS: Jokes apart, I am still stuck at Mohammad uncle (late shot, leg shots, chappati shots) – old days !!

    • mate 9 years ago

      “the only other existence of him on earth after Aamir”

      I disagree with you, you can’t compare Sachin with a player who is at the initial stage of his career, but no doubt he has great potential and capability to match the greatness of the likes of Mike Tyson and G.Foreman. But you can say he is the young Sachin in boxing ring.

  4. Anjanpur685Miles 9 years ago

    I stopped following Cricket after that (I used to keep all records in my notebook/ die hard fan of cricket). It was a heartbreak yes, but somehow I felt (that time also) that the religion played a major role in blaming him alone. (Still feel so).

    All after that are “circus records” for me…(except for honorable exceptions like Tendulkar, Ganguly etc…who really loved the game )

  5. Anjanpur685Miles 9 years ago

    @mate, i spelt Aamir not Amir. Hard luck for getting laughs.

  6. 9 years ago

    Good decision !!

  7. ank_16n 9 years ago

    🙁 🙁 🙁
    greatest player ever to play cricket..!!

    now cricket becomes human sport…after 1 n only god calls it a day..!!

  8. sputnik 9 years ago

    Sachin fans won’t like this article.

    An farewell left too late

    Tendulkar’s legacy has been diminished by his long twilight, and the team he served for so long with such distinction has been damaged too

    Mukul Kesavan

    October 14, 2013
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    Hang on, he hasn’t left yet. The time to pay tribute, to lift our eyes from the here and now and celebrate a great career, to memorialise genius, will come when Sachin Tendulkar’s cricketing life ends with the second Test against West Indies in late November. This is the time to debate the manner of his going, the timing of the departure. And no, it isn’t bad form to do this: Tendulkar is an active player; embalming fluids like reverence and nostalgia can wait.

    The last great Bombay batsman retired without notice. He played one of the great innings against spin bowling on a pitch that turned square, 96 in a losing cause against Pakistan in Bangalore and left. He was 37. He was in the form of his life: his last 25 outings had yielded four centuries and six fifties at an average of over 58.

    Tendulkar’s retirement, in contrast, has been chronically foretold. Not by him but by his bearish batting form. In his last 25 innings Tendulkar has scored four fifties, no centuries, and has averaged under 30, more than 20 runs off his career average. He is 40; he has been in decline for at least two years.

    Enoch Powell famously wrote, “All political lives, unless they are cut off in midstream at a happy juncture, end in failure, because that is the nature of politics and of human affairs.” Substitute “political” and “politics” with “cricket” and you have the justification offered by Tendulkar’s partisans for his unwillingness to acknowledge cricketing mortality. Don’t all cricketing lives taper off, they ask. Why shouldn’t a genius like Tendulkar be allowed to rage against the dying of the light?

    If this is a serious question, not just a rhetorical flourish, it’s worth answering. First, there is nothing inevitable about great batsmen eking out unworthy ends. Not all cricketing lives end in failure; some manage the proverbial blaze of glory. Look at Sunil Gavaskar and his valedictory 96. And if Gavaskar belongs to the past, that foreign country where things are done differently, let us look at Tendulkar’s contemporaries.

    Steve Waugh’s last series – against India – was a PR spectacular, so it’s almost unfair to compare that leave-taking with anyone else’s, but it’s worth noticing that the run-up to that climax was pretty impressive too. Waugh’s last 25 innings include five centuries, six fifties, and his average in this final phase of his career makes Gavaskar’s seem modest: Waugh averaged close to 65 per innings.

    His compatriot Ricky Ponting makes for an interesting comparison. He is Tendulkar’s nearest contemporary, 38 years old to Tendulkar’s 40, and he played his last Test a year before Tendulkar is scheduled to play his, almost to the day. Like Tendulkar, Ponting was criticised for lingering after his “best-by” date. But for someone who overstayed his welcome, the 25 innings rule-of-thumb tells us that Ponting averaged 38 to Tendulkar’s 33. He also managed to produce a century and a double-century through this batting twilight.

    But it is the comparison with Brian Lara, by common consensus Tendulkar’s greatest batting contemporary and his closest contender for the title of the best batsman of the fin de siècle, that speaks most directly to the “dying of the light” argument. Look at Lara’s last 25 innings. He averaged just under 45, more than ten runs an innings better than Tendulkar, but that’s almost beside the point: it is his big scores that stand out.

    Children ought to be indulged, not great men, and Tendulkar is an immortal. We are such a needy nation that as a cricketing public we have created a force field that has skewed the game’s priorities and conflated Tendulkar’s well-being with the good of cricket

    Lara hit two centuries and two double-centuries in his last year of Test match cricket. These centuries were scored against substantial teams: Australia, India and Pakistan. For a team in near terminal decline, against strong opposition, Lara fought magnificent rearguard actions; in the grim desert of West Indian decline, he blazed like a brand; he raged against the dying of the light. Teams give ageing, inconsistent geniuses the benefit of the doubt because they believe they are still capable of match-turning bursts of inspiration. Lara repaid that faith; Tendulkar hasn’t.

    Over the last two years Tendulkar has been more accountant than artist. His ledger is filled with entries that tally quantity and longevity. He has a 100 international hundreds, over 34,000 international runs, and by the time the Wankhede Test is done, he will have become the first cricketer in the history of the game to have played 200 Test matches.

    Over the last two years he has plodded towards these landmarks with all the flair of a time-serving journeyman. From being a batsman who brought to the crease the intent of Viv Richards in a rage, he has become a batsman as intent on self-preservation as Boycott batting out a bad patch.

    Does it matter? He remains the greatest batsman of his generation and India under Dhoni are once again near the top of the Test match tree. Tendulkar carried India, so the argument goes, for more than 20 years: can’t India carry him for two?

    No. It can and has, but it shouldn’t have. Children ought to be indulged, not great men, and Tendulkar is an immortal. These two years have damaged Tendulkar, the Indian team and cricket as an international game.

    Kapil Dev prolonged his career painfully as he chased after Richard Hadlee’s then-record aggregate of wickets. By the time he huffed and puffed his way past the mark, a career marked by loose-limbed grace had begun to seem a little laboured and leaden. And for what? With Murali on his Everest, Kapil’s summit begins to look like base camp. In much the same way, Tendulkar’s legacy has been diminished by his long twilight.

    The team he served for so long with such distinction has been damaged too. If he had left, as Dravid did, in early 2012, after the rout in Australia, India’s middle order might have completed its post-Galactico transition earlier. Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rohit Sharma and company might not have set the world on fire if Tendulkar had left then, but they would have been hard put to do much worse than he did during this time.

    Most importantly, if Tendulkar had retired earlier, India might not be playing an unscheduled two-Test engagement against West Indies at the expense of a proper Test series against South Africa, Test cricket’s top-ranked team. It is no secret that this attenuated “series” against one of the less formidable Test sides in contemporary cricket was likely dreamt up by the BCCI to give Tendulkar a comfortable way of both getting to his 200th Test and saying farewell at home.

    Think of the enormity of this: the Future Tours Programme has been disrupted, the financial standing of the South African board compromised, a marquee contest between the first- and third-placed teams in Test cricket put at risk or, at best, abbreviated, just to make sure that Tendulkar can retire at the time and place that suits him best. The BCCI might well be settling other scores with CSA, and Tendulkar may not have asked for the West Indian tour, but what are the chances it would have materialised if he had retired earlier or, alternately, committed himself to touring South Africa? Zero.

    This destructively delayed retirement and its fall-out isn’t Tendulkar’s fault alone. He is such an extraordinary cricketer, and we are such a needy nation that as a cricketing public we have created a force field that has skewed the game’s priorities and conflated Tendulkar’s well-being with the good of cricket. No individual, or so the cliché used to go, is bigger than the game. There’s an exception to that rule now: for the duration of the series against West Indies, till the end of Tendulkar’s 200th Test, Test cricket will principally be an occasion for rehearsing Tendulkar’s greatness.”


    • hithere 9 years ago

      one century and they will be singing hosannas.

      Some people are too nitpicky. Let the guy retire gracefully. He was only pillar when there were none.

      Personally I prefer Dravid but you need to give credit where it is due.

  9. Cinema lover 9 years ago

    Sachin and Lara faced 7 best bawler of their time McGrath, wasim, waqar, Donald pollock, warne, murali.
    Sachin played 246 (test +odi) inning against above 7 best bawler and scored 9344 runs with 28 centuries @40.10
    Lara played 230 (test + odi) inning against 7 best bawler and scored 9944 runs with 26 centuries @46.32
    Sachin played 46 inn (test + odi) against Donald scored 1283 with 2 -100. @27.88
    Lara – 36 inn, 1400 runs, 2-100 @41.17

    Sachin played 51 inn (test + odi) against pollock scored 1593 runs with 4-100 @32.51
    Lara- 56 inn, 2096 runs, 4-100 @38.10

    Sachin played 36 inn (test+ odi) against wasim akram scored 1164 runs 1-100 @35.27
    Lara- 46 inn, 1556 runs 3-100@37.39

    Sachin played 30 inn (test+ odi) against waqar scored 1058 runs 3-100 @37.78
    Lara- 41 inn, 1442 runs 3-100@37.94

    Sachin played 41 inn (test+odi) against McGrath scored 1490 runs, 4-100 @36.34
    Lara- 69 inn, 3059, 8-100 @47.79

    Sachin played 68 inn (test+ odi) against warne scored 2207 10-100 @59.64
    Lara- 54 inn, 2636 runs, 8-100 @ 52.72

    Sachin played 68 inn (test + odi) scored 2986 runs 10-100, @48.14
    Lara – 33 inn, 2016, 7-100 @67.20

    There is no comparison in terms of 200 plus score
    Lara is only batsman in history who has only 6 not out in test who played 100 or more test sachin has more than 40 not out which help to boosted his career average.

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