August 23, 2012

Indian cricket

Storm in Hyderabadi dinner-plate

Jayaditya Gupta

It's the most unlikely spat - a storm in a dinner-plate, if you will - between the most unlikely protagonists. At his retirement press conference on Saturday, VVS Laxman was asked, by the way, whether he'd informed his India captain, MS Dhoni. "I was trying to get in touch with MS, it's difficult to reach him, everyone knows that," he replied with a smile on his face.

A couple of days later the Indian team hit Laxman's hometown of Hyderabad ahead of the New Zealand Test match. Laxman had a few people - including Tendulkar, Gambhir, Sehwag and Zaheer - over for dinner but among those not on the list was the India captain. Sure enough, the issue was raised at the pre-match presser, and Dhoni responded with a straight bat. "People who know me have always complained that I'm someone who's difficult to get hold of. It's not something new, I'm trying to improve but just not improving."

Next question: What did he think of Laxman's retirement? "You need to ask VVS about it."

Finally, the straight one: Were you invited for the dinner party hosted by VVS last night? The answer was short and crisp: "No."

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Jayaditya Gupta is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo in India

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Keywords: Controversy, Retirements

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