MARCH 24, 2015

Boom Boom Afridi: one of a kind

Uzair Rizvi: Shahid Afridi entertained us with his unique brand of cricket and surely left a lasting impression on the game. He was cricket's greatest entertainer. Boom Boom is irreplaceable
Shahid Afridi entertained us with his unique brand of cricket and left a lasting impression on the game © AFP
SEPTEMBER 03, 2014

Is there such a thing as an ideal retirement?

Samir Chopra: The decision to quit is an acutely difficult one, and many cricketers trip up when it's their turn to take it
APRIL 06, 2014

Sri Lanka cricket

Sanga and Mahela, a partnership for the ages

Two of Sri Lanka cricket's greatest batting talents bid their farewell from T20 internationals at the end of the World Cup. Anand Vasu, in Wisden India, encapsulates the impact Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara have had in moving cricket forward in the country.

Off the field, the Jayawardene-Sangakkara combine has had bigger battles than anything they faced on the field. The two had a vision for cricket in Sri Lanka, one that Sri Lanka Cricket did not always agree with. At different times they have had to negotiate, plead, insist, argue, cajole, even scheme without malice, to get things done. To use a cringe-worthy word that is so popular with the young of today, the Jayawardene-Sangakkara bromance is one with few parallels in cricket. And Sunday is important for it signifies the first step in the winding down of the careers of two modern greats.

APRIL 06, 2014

When sportsmen stop caring enough

Jonathan Wilson: The body and mind may be fit enough but athletes often retire when overcome by a profound weariness. Cases in point: Ponting and Swann
NOVEMBER 18, 2013

Highlights from the Tendulkar retirement reel

R Rajkumar: It was a time for wrenching emotion, frank outpourings, and high-pressure hoses
NOVEMBER 18, 2013

The perfect end

Jonathan Wilson: The best retirements require struggle, one last victory over the forces of entropy, the century made from unpromising beginnings through teary eyes
OCTOBER 13, 2013

Goodbye Sachin

Philip Brown: A photograph from the previous time Philip Brown snapped Sachin Tendulkar, in tribute to the great Indian sportsman who'll soon be retiring from the game
OCTOBER 11, 2013

The kid who finally had to grow up

Rajan Thambehalli : To this fan, Sachin Tendulkar is a kid who managed to extend his childhood beyond its definition
OCTOBER 08, 2013

Harmison, the enforcer

Ross Lawson: A chronicle of Steve Harmison's career, from the highs of Ashes 2005 and helping Durham to consecutive County Championships, to a low-key farewell from Test cricket
OCTOBER 08, 2013

The enigma of Harmy

Jon Hotten: The gap between his greatest and lowest moments frustrated spectators, but it also indicated the possibilities he could offer
OCTOBER 06, 2013

Harmison of Sabina and elsewhere

Jonathan Wilson: His unpredictability could be frustrating, but perhaps the truth of his career and his personality was that he was somebody at his best out of the limelight
JULY 30, 2013

The sportsman's cliff

Jon Hotten: What must it be like to face your mortality just when your peers in other fields are beginning to excel in their professions?
JULY 17, 2013

Mathew Sinclair: from riches to rags

Freddie Wilde: Mathew Sinclair burst onto the Test arena with a double-hundred, yet been forced to quit the game to secure himself and his family a means to a living
JULY 07, 2013

Two Chris Martin stories

Paul Ford: A dropped catch and a nervous innings - they don't portray him in a good light, yet somehow they do
JULY 05, 2013

New Zealand cricket

'NZC are organising a press conference. Will anyone turn up?'

Chris Martin's humility, despite a career spanning 15 years and boasting one shy of 600 first-class wickets, is one of the many things Pat Cole, the manager of Auckland Aces, finds fascinating about New Zealand's third-highest wicket-taker in Tests as he explains in his blog

"Chris has a very perceptive insight. He is incredibly bright. He has just completed a distance learning degree that included diverse subjects like American history. I loved driving around towns in New Zealand listening to his perception of things. Conversation with Chris was exciting because I learnt something. For example, he once told me "I looked around New Zealand, worked out who the best bowlers were, and made sure I was better than them". Chris rarely speaks without thinking. As a senior player, he keeps an eye out and when he feels something needs to be said he says it. Very rarely does he talk to the group; he prefers to talk quietly in the background. When Tommy talks to you, you listen."

MARCH 06, 2013

Women's cricket

Sthalekar reflects on her retirement

In her blog, Lisa Sthalekar recounts her last season in international and domestic cricket and how she arrived at the decision to retire.

Many people have asked me over the past few weeks whether it was a quick, simple decision to call it day. For me, it certainly was neither I often find myself saying to family and friends that I am a realist when it comes to life, and in assessing when to finish up my playing career, my approach to the decision making was no different - be a realist. Simply put, I always reminded myself that at some point everybody has to retire and the magic is in getting the timing right.

So how do you work out when the time is right? I guess the priority for me in this regard has always been to make sure that I would retire when I was at the top of my game, contributing in all facets; not being hidden, whether that be in the field, in terms of when I bowled or where I was in the batting order.

DECEMBER 06, 2012

Why Sachin and Shahid should let the curtain fall

Kamran Abbasi: What do you do when the magic dies? When eyes, slower in reaching focus, and hands and body, sluggish in finding shapes and arcs, betray you?
DECEMBER 04, 2012

Growing up with Ricky

Jarrod Kimber: My emotional development as an adult seemed to run parallel with Ricky Ponting's career, as he was the cricketer who took me from my teens into my 30s
DECEMBER 03, 2012

A story about Sachin

Freddie Wilde: It will be one of sports great tragedies if it gets to the stage where Tendulkar's attempted preservation of what he has left, is only acting as detriment to his legacy
AUGUST 23, 2012

Indian cricket

Storm in Hyderabadi dinner-plate

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."