Rumours of Laxman calling it a day began with the debacle in Australia. But after Dravid’s stepping down, the Hyderabadi batsman continued to do the club cricket rounds, training hard, well into the hot Indian summer. It was obvious that Laxman was confident of returning to form and keen to have another go in Tests.
With the team for the series at home against New Zealand to be picked, once again Laxman’s spot in the side was surrounded by speculation. Some media reports indicated that the selectors had spoken to VVS and assured him of a place in the side, provided he bid farewell after it. Though that was never proven, Laxman went on to surprise the cricket community and his fans alike. He announced his retirement with immediate effect, after he was picked in the side for the two-match Test series and just days before the first Test began. Laxman claimed he wanted to give youngsters the opportunity to play at home. In hit he denied himself what was undoubtedly a huge temptation to play one last game in his home town.
The wristy stylist will always be remembered for several of his epic innings. Mohali, Adelaide, Sydney to name just a few above them all for his 281* at Kolkata’s Eden Gardens in 2001 that scripted India’s most famous Test win and turnaround of recent decades. With his affinity for Aussie bowling attacks, the only ones heaving a sigh of relief are the boys from Down Under.