Calcutta: Former India captain Sourav Ganguly has taken strong exception to one of the national selectors having advised V.V.S. Laxman to retire, a fact reported by The Telegraph, on Saturday.
During the course of a panel discussion on television, Sourav said: "Even after playing for the country for so many years and scoring so many runs, if you cannot expect fairness and equality from the national selectors, this is bound to happen. Laxman has sent across a message through his retirement to the national selectors.
"In Australia, I have seen Ishant (Sharma) not getting success even on a green wicket… Even (Gautam) Gambhir, (Mahendra Singh) Dhoni and the likes had failed in the series in Australia. So, it's a complete case of unequal treatment. Age cannot be a factor.
"Laxman has faced many criticisms in the recent years… But then criticisms are a part of life. However, the treatment meted out by the selectors definitely rattled him. Their judgement hurt him.
"Srikkanth has a big problem in communicating... A player like Laxman would not have trained so hard if he had retirement in mind. If they (selectors) conveyed their opinion to Laxman earlier, this situation would not have surfaced. Why did they stretch it (the matter) till August? The selectors' failure to communicate boils down to the quality of the selectors.
"The selectors don't select a team taking the future of Indian cricket into account. They merely do a balancing act by means of removing and adding somebody… Indian cricket will not progress this way. Laxman has scored almost 9000 Test runs, and all the selectors put together can't count that in numbers!
"Probably, it was the toughest decision for him, tougher than mine... I was playing (in a series) and then took the decision. But in his case, he does not have a future in IPL as well... He was training very hard at the NCA and was expecting to play this season. Hats off to Laxman… He is 200 per cent right in his decision.
"The brightest innings according to me will always be his innings (against Australia) at the Eden (in 2001). Though I usually give more importance to overseas performances, yet I must say that Laxman was simply outstanding there."