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'MS Dhoni dropped me': Sehwag opens up about why he contemplated retirement from ODIs in 2008

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 2 June 2022, 16:08 IST
Virender Sehwag

Former Indian opener Virender Sehwag changed the definition of a Test cricket with his free-spirited batting for the men in blue. The right handed batsman featured in 104 Tests, 251 ODIs and 19 T20Is amassing 8586, 8273 and 394 runs in the three formats, respectively.

Virender Sehwag was also the first Indian batsman to hit a triple century in Tests. Even for such a great player, there was a time when he considered early retirement. The incident took place in the time of India's 2008 tour of Australia. Sehwag detailed about the incident, in a show, when questioned how to deal with criticism.

"There are two types of players. One type of player enjoys accepting challenges. Like Virat Kohli. He listens to criticism, and then makes comeback. Then there are the second type of players who does not react to criticism because they know what they can achieve. I was that kind of a player. I did not care about who criticised me and who did not. In 2008, when we were in Australia, this question (of retirement) came to my mind. I made a comeback in the Test series, scored a 150. In the ODIs, I couldn't score that much in three-four attempts. So, MS Dhoni dropped me from the playing XI. Then the thought of quitting ODI cricket came to my mind. I thought I will continue playing only Test cricket," Sehwag said.

"Sachin Tendulkar stopped me at that time. He said 'this is a bad phase of your life. Just wait, go back home after this tour, think hard and then decide what to do next'. Luckily, I didn't announce my retirement at that time. I would have announced my retirement on the Australia tour, return to India and played only Test cricket. Time changed. We returned to India. K Srikanth was the chairman (of selectors). He asked me about 'what to do?' I said I was dropped for three-four matches regardless of being in good form. So, what do I do? I told him 'if you give me assurance that you will pick me in all the matches, then you pick me otherwise don't'. Then Srikanth spoke to MS Dhoni in the time of the 2008 Asia Cup. Then Dhoni asked me about my preferred batting slot and told me I would feature in all games. Following that I played good cricket."

Virender Sehwag last featured in an international match for the men in blue in 2013.

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First published: 2 June 2022, 16:08 IST