Very very special Laxman has announced his retirement from international cricket with immediate effect. The affable Hyderabadi strokemaker’s announcement comes in as a shock to cricket lovers.

In his international career spanning over 16 years, V V S Laxman treated the Aussies in particular with disdain helping India to notch up a victory in one of the greatest tests played at Kolkata along with Rahul Dravid.

His innings of 281 at Kolkata is rated as one of the finest counter-attacks and demolished the Steve Waugh’s Australian side which was ruling the roost.

For nearly one and a half decade, with his deft flicks and silken drives, along with Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Saurav Ganguly, he played a stellar role in the Indian team.

"After a career spanning 16 years I am moving on," an emotional Laxman told media persons today. The 37-year-old middle order bat played 134 tests averaging 45.97 with an aggregate tally of 8,781 runs. This was embellished with 17 tons.

Some sports writers described him as a crisis man. A good number of his innings came under adversity and few of them helped India coast through against opponents.

His retirement comes on the eve of the two-test series with Kiwis. While there was some speculation that he would retire either after

Hyderabad test or after the series, but his announcement is hard for cricket lovers to take it in stride.

With youngsters knocking at the Test doors, the right handed batsman was under pressure with not so good performances in the recent past.

Laxman had smoothly slipped into the void created by another Hyderabadi Mohammed Azaruddin. They were often compared when it comes to on side play.

He was dropped several times during his career only to make a come back. He was at times described as a come back man, who made it back to Indian team again each time he was sidelined.

Laxman recently graced the event where Sportstar was re-launched.

rishikumar.vundi@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on August 18, 2012)
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