Saurav calls it quits, first of the ‘Fab Four’ wickets to fallOctober 7th, 2008 - 7:49 pm ICT by IANS
Bangalore, Oct 7 (IANS) India’s former captain Sourav Ganguly Tuesday decided to call it quits after the four-Test series against Australia, ending a 12-year-long international career.Ganguly took the media by surprise when he announced his retirement at the end of a press briefing here.
“I have to make an announcement. This is going to be my last series. I have decided to quit. I have told my teammates that this four-Test series will be my last. Thanks for all your support (media), hopefully we will end on a winning note,” Ganguly told a crowded media conference.
The former skipper was left out of Irani Trophy squad, triggering speculation that he might call it a day. But the new selection committee chaired by Krishnamachari Srikkanth picked him for the first two Tests against Australia.
Media reports suggested that the Indian cricket board has reached an agreement with the senior players to phase them out in honourable manner and Ganguly will be the first one to go.
Ganguly has played 109 Tests, scoring 6,888 at an average of 41.74 while in one-dayers he racked up 11,363 runs in 311 matches at a average of 41.02.
The 36-year-old made his Test debut against England in 1996 and scored two back-to-back centuries. He never looked back.
Ganguly was handed the captaincy when the Indian team was going through one of its worst phases after the match-fixing controversy in 2000. He led from the front and is credited for giving shape to a young team India that played fearless brand of cricket. He ingrained a fighting instinct in the team and whole-heartedly supported youngsters like Virender Sehwag, Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh and Mohammad Kaif.
Ganguly also formed a lethal combination with and John Wright of New Zealand as coach, guiding the team to important series wins against Australia and Pakistan.
But he fell out with the new coach, Australian Greg Chappell, and was dropped from the team. The fighter in Ganguly did not give up and he made a triumphant return to international cricket after sitting out for one year.
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