MUMBAI (Reuters) - Sachin Tendulkar has expressed surprise at former captain Saurav Ganguly's decision to quit international cricket after the ongoing home test series against Australia.
Ganguly announced that the four-test series this month would be his last following suggestions that the Indian board had drawn up an exit plan for five senior players.
A board official said this month that skipper Anil Kumble, Tendulkar, Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Vangipurappu Laxman, all well into their 30s, had been told to plan their retirements by December.
"I was little bit surprised but you know...the individual knows exactly when to move away from the game and I don't know exactly what's going on in his mind, what he thinks of his future," Tendulkar said of Ganguly's decision.
"I am sure it must have taken him a long time to reach that. And it's a big decision. It is a difficult decision.
"If he feels that this is the way to go, then we all should respect (that)," he told NDTV channel in an interview to be aired on Friday.
India's ageing batting stalwarts came under intense pressure following a poor series in a 2-1 test defeat in Sri Lanka in August that led to a debate in cricket-mad India about whether it was time for them to make way for the next generation of players.
But the senior batsmen found form in the test series against Australia.
Ganguly notched his 16th test century and completed 7,000 test runs after Tendulkar eclipsed Brian Lara's world record for most test runs during a spectacular 88 in the second test, which India won by 320 runs to go up 1-0 in the series.
Laxman scored a century in the ongoing third test on Thursday to help India take grip of the match after a double hundred by opener Gautam Gambhir.
"One is made to believe that this is the right opinion ... (to) know exactly when to move away from the game," Tendulkar added.
"We individuals will take that decision when we feel it is the right time."
6 months ago