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Has VVS Laxman retired from one day cricket?

by Gaurav Sethi

We know for certain Dravid has retired from one day cricket. Even he knows now. But what about Laxman, with his old blues in the closet – he’s exactly where Dravid was before his services were summoned.

Laxman last played an ODI close to 5 years’ back. He scored, er, he didn’t. Somewhat ironical, as Laxman refused to score in his first innings as well. Both ducks against African teams, South Africa and Zimbabwe. His first game against another African team, Kenya, he scored – 1.

Before Dravid’s return in England, his last game too was in South Africa. He scored, gotcha there, 4. He was run out.

When Dravid was made to return against England, he scored 4, 2, 32, 2, 19 and 69. He even got run out in one of those innings.

There really isn’t much of a case for playing Laxman in ODIs. Just as there wasn’t one for Dravid. Doubt he'll do any worse than Dravid though, but there's a romance to it - Laxman in blues, down under. When he played there last, he dished out two 100s in two days.

If he is asked to return, it will only be after a 4-0 drubbing in Australia - and if he pulls off a Dravid-in-England.

Laxman has played 86 ODIs over 8 ½ years – his batting average is 30.76, strike rate 71.23, 6 100s in there. Laxman made his ODI debut when he was 22.

Rohit Sharma made his one-day debut when he was 20 in 2007. So far in over 4 years he’s only played 67 ODIs. His batting average is 31.35, strike rate 77.25, 2 100s in there.

On debut, Rohit scored, er, he didn’t – he wasn’t required to bat. In his last ODI too, he didn’t score  – he was retired hurt on 0.

You could call VVS and Rohit Sharma Mr & Mrs Lazy Elegance. Both are masters of the give-it-away school. Both secretly want to be opposition coaches that conduct catching practice drills.

In spite of his one-day misdemeanours, VVS has moved on, he and test cricket are drinking buddies now.

As for Rohit, he’s shed a few kilos. Where am I going with this? Only Rohit will tell.

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