V.V.S. Laxman –one of the greatest batsmen in the Indian cricket history, has revealed on Thursday (November 15), that giving up on opening the innings for his country was the toughest decision that he had to take in his career to save his career in early days.
The 44-year-old also said that he was not sure whether he would play for India again once he failed as an opener and that’s why he had to decide to bat in middle-order, as the only way to get back into the playing XI was by scoring runs heavily on the board.
Speaking at the formal release of his autobiography ‘281 And Beyond’, Laxman further went on to reveal that the retirement was also a tough call, but is pleased with his achievement at the age of 37 and felt grateful that he was part of the classy middle-order, which had been some of the Indian cricket greats.
At the event, Laxman told Harsha Bhogle on Thursday, “Yes, I was not sure whether I would play for India again with that very important decision for I knew the chances of playing in the eleven were very slim then and the only way to get back was by scoring runs heavily. Yes, retirement was also a tough call as you knew that you would be giving up something you loved (playing) and enjoyed for so long. But, again I had that feeling of achievement too at 37.”
Meanwhile, former International said it was an honor for him to be part of the Fab Five of Indian cricket –Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Sourav Ganguly, and Rahul Dravid, saying they had a sense of pride in whatever they did for the country in the game of cricket.
He further added on the same, “Well, it has been a great privilege to be part of the Fab Five of Indian cricket (Sachin, Sehwag, Ganguly, Dravid being the others). They were all different personalities but with one goal - to win matches for India. They had a sense of pride in whatever they did for the country.”
Interestingly, Laxman picked his 167 against Australia in the Sydney Test rather than iconic innings of 281 in the 2001 Kolkata Test as his favorite and more significant innings of his career, which instilled confidence in him that he belongs to the big league at the highest level.
He signed off by saying, “First, it was very special being my first Test century and more importantly, gave me the confidence that I belong to the big league at the highest level. And, honestly, I was not surprised with my 281 for the season before that series the preparations both mentally and physically very good with Ramesh Sir (SAI athletics coach N. Ramesh) ensuring a different fitness regimen for the first time in my career. I was ready to bat for long hours at the highest level. Definitely, 281 has changed my career and that of Indian cricket too in terms of getting the self-belief that we can beat anyone in the world and dream about being the No.1 team, which we achieved eventually.”
(With Sportstarlive Inputs)