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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Sachin Tendulkar Announces Retirement From One Day Cricket!

Just on the eve of the selection of Team India for the ODI and T20 cricket Series against Pakistan beginning 25th December today morning, the Indian cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar has announced his retirement from One Day International cricket. One or two days back the little master was reported to have declared his availability to the BCCI for the ODI series against Pakistan. What transpired between him and the Indian cricket Board is not clear. Last night England defeated India in the second and last T20 match played in Mumbai on a last ball six by Captain Morgan thus drawing the T20 Series 1-1. The national selectors of the BCCI then announced its decision to declare a new team for the Pakistan Series.

Sachin Tendulkar, considered next only to the legendary Don Bradman, in his glorious one-day career of 23 years has amassed 18,426 runs in 463 one-dayers at an average of 44.83. The diminutive right-hander has an astonishing 49 hundreds in the format, including a double hundred -- the first in this form of the game. Tendulkar made his ODI debut against Pakistan way back in 1989 and interestingly he is quitting the scene just ahead of another series against the arch-rivals. His much awaited hundred of hundreds has been accomplished in March, 2012 in a one-day international match against Bangladesh. Tendulkar’s recent slump particularly in Tests had been a matter of great concern and speculation was rife about his possible retirement or being dropped from Team India.

One of greatest cricketers of all time, the 39 year old Sachin Tendulkar said in Mumbai this morning, "I have decided to retire from the One-Day format of the game. I feel blessed to have fulfilled the dream of being part of a World Cup wining Indian team. The preparatory process to defend the World Cup in 2015 should begin early and in right earnest." The brightest moment of his ODI career came last year when he finally became part of a World Cup winning Indian team after five previous appearances. 

The mood all around in India is an overwhelming sense of loss as the greatest Indian cricketer will not be seen in action again in the one-day format of the game. At the same time there has also been a sense of relief too as most of his fans and cricket experts were agonized watching him struggling for runs and failing again and again. Therefore, the reactions on the whole have been mixed and on expected lines.

Meanwhile, the Indian squads for both the ODI and the T20 Series against Pakistan have been announced. Yuvraj Singh is finally back in the one-day team and Virender Sehwag has also been retained. Ajinkya Rahane who played in the T20 Series against England replaces Sehwag again for the opening slot in the T20 team. Rank newcomer Shami Ahmed gets selected for the ODI team as an all rounder along with bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar getting picked for both the teams. For the ODI team there have been six changes compared to the team that played in Sri Lanka in July-August, 2012.  Zaheer Khan does not find himself in any of the teams, and most importantly MS Dhoni remains Captain for both teams.

The Squads: 

ODI squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Capt), Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, Ashok Dinda, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed, Amit Mishra.
T20 squad: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (Capt), Gautam Gambhir, Ajinkya Rahane, Yuvraj Singh, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Virat Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja, R Ashwin, Ashok Dinda, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Parvinder Awana, Piyush Chawla, Ambati Rayudu.
Pakistan begins the India Tour with the first T20 International to be played in Bangalore on 25th December. Amidst high voltage expectations and anticipation of cricket lovers security arrangements are being made on an unprecedented scale considering the opposition from different political parties within India and the delicate bilateral relations between the two neighbors.  

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