India news June 14, 2014

Murali Kartik retires from cricket

ESPNcricinfo staff
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Indian cricket's nearly man

Murali Kartik, the former India left-arm spinner, has announced his retirement from all forms of cricket. Kartik, 37, played eight Tests, 37 ODIs and one Twenty20 international for India. His first-class career, which began in 1996, spanned more than 17 years.

Kartik's career coincided with the dominance of Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh in the India side, and as a result, he never got a sustained run in Tests. He played four Tests in 2000, making his debut against South Africa in Mumbai but had to wait for more than three years for his next chance, which came against Australia in Sydney in January 2004, where he had a return of 1 for 211.

He bounced back with a solid showing against the same opponents at home later that year and his seven wickets were crucial in India winning the Mumbai Test in November. The first Test against South Africa in Kanpur later that month turned out to be Kartik's last, although he made a short-lived ODI comeback in 2007.

The comeback brought about his finest ODI performance, also against Australia in Mumbai, where he claimed 6 for 27 and then made an unbeaten 21 in a match-winning ninth-wicket partnership with Zaheer Khan.

"The Mumbai Test (match haul of 7/76) where I won the Man-of-the-Match award will always be special as we were able to restrict an Australian side chasing 103 (107)," he said, when asked to pick out his career highlights. "Also when Sachin presented me with my India Test cap and Kapil Paaji (then coach) presented the India hat."

Kartik was also a key member of the Railways side that made successive Ranji Trophy finals in 2000-01 and 2001-02, both times against Baroda. He played a vital role in their maiden title triumph in 2001-02, taking 5 for 51 and 3 for 7 in addition to scoring 69 in the second innings of the final.

In all, he played 203 first-class games and took 644 wickets at an average of 26.70. Nearly a third of those wickets were for English county sides Middlesex, Somerset, Surrey and Lancashire. He was also a handy batsman and was even used as an opener at times. He made 4423 first-class runs at an average of 20.19 with a highest of 96.

In the latter part of his career, Kartik also enjoyed success in the shortest format in England. He was part of Middlesex's T20-winning squad in 2008, and made two finals with Somerset in 2010 and 2011. He has represented Kolkata Knight Riders, Royal Challengers Bangalore and Pune Warriors in the IPL and was picked by Kings XI Punjab in the 2014 auction. Kartik has said he will be available to play for Kings XI in the forthcoming Champions League T20.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rally_Windies on June 16, 2014, 18:30 GMT

    well well well ...

    the cricket john come latelys are out in full force calling kartik a mediocre bowler ..

    Truth be told, after 8 tests,, Swann, Warner, Kumble, Harjaban, Ajmal and the lot all had very POOR records ...

    You cannot judge a Bowler who has played 40-50 tests to a guy who has played 8..

    The mere playing at the highest level regularly , improves a spinner !

    If Kartik (or any spinner) was invested in , for 20 Tests in 3 years, i can guarantee they will be twice the bowler they were on debut ...

    Shillingford and Narine are perfect examples ...

    Shilly was averaging 60 at one point..and has not dragged his average down to 34.. Narine was aveagin 50+ at one point , and has draged his down to the low 40's ...

    if Narine is allowed 14 Tests on the Trott, by the time he gets to 20, he'll have a low 30 average ..

    Kartick might have been averaged about 29 in Tests, had he gotten 40-50 games

  • Rough_Fan on June 16, 2014, 11:16 GMT

    Kartik was a poor bowler loved by his state fans only..

  • Mayank_Saxena1286 on June 16, 2014, 9:54 GMT

    Murali Kartik is a gud bowler but i think he don't get much chances to prove himself worthy. MK utilize his skills in county cricket very well, he is one of the best spin bowler in county cricket. I think now he can do Commentary which he already did earlier and he could also be a spin bowling coach. All the best for future MK.

  • on June 16, 2014, 9:44 GMT

    Well done. Wish u a happy retired life. I am pretty sure you will take up the mike to start your new career. You should also thank Shri.Iqbal sir(Ex-EID Parry & Co) who brought you to the world of cricket in chennai when you are doing your schooling. He used to conduct the coaching camp during summer at Madrase-Iz ground opp. to LIC and bring every day one person from the cricket field to encourage the young people to take up cricket. Great sir.

  • anver777 on June 16, 2014, 9:21 GMT

    Well served MK... hope one of his former counties, offer him a role of spin coach & share his knowledge & skills with youngsters to uplift the standard of spin in Eng cricket !!! I guess even as a commentator he's not bad at all... My Best Wishes !!!

  • bigbang07 on June 16, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    Mediocre bowler at international level. Poor avg and SR, especially in tests abroad. No idea what the fuss is about.

  • on June 16, 2014, 1:23 GMT

    Quality bowler who genuinely troubled Australia at their peak and was for many years ahead of Harbhajan who never seemed to get dropped.

    Joins Mohammad Kaif and Irfan Pathan among the Indian careers that never were.

  • on June 15, 2014, 18:36 GMT

    Fiesty character ... wankhede test match in 2004 and Odi in 2007 brought his best. @inswing he made his debut at 23, kumble was the front line and later Harbhajan dominated

  • Venkatb on June 15, 2014, 18:35 GMT

    In many ways he was the Shivalkar of our times, living in the shadows of Kumble and Harbhajan - very utilitarian and clearly a team player. Had Ganguly showed disdain for MK, much as he did with S. Ramesh, and both could clearly walk into a playing XI in their days.

  • on June 15, 2014, 17:05 GMT

    Absolutely wonderful cricketer, he had everything in his favour but him being very vocal was the reason for his downfall too. Silky smooth action, wonderful loop, variations, guile but Sourav Ganguly did not like him which is a fact too. Anyway all the best Kartik for your retired life.

  • Rally_Windies on June 16, 2014, 18:30 GMT

    well well well ...

    the cricket john come latelys are out in full force calling kartik a mediocre bowler ..

    Truth be told, after 8 tests,, Swann, Warner, Kumble, Harjaban, Ajmal and the lot all had very POOR records ...

    You cannot judge a Bowler who has played 40-50 tests to a guy who has played 8..

    The mere playing at the highest level regularly , improves a spinner !

    If Kartik (or any spinner) was invested in , for 20 Tests in 3 years, i can guarantee they will be twice the bowler they were on debut ...

    Shillingford and Narine are perfect examples ...

    Shilly was averaging 60 at one point..and has not dragged his average down to 34.. Narine was aveagin 50+ at one point , and has draged his down to the low 40's ...

    if Narine is allowed 14 Tests on the Trott, by the time he gets to 20, he'll have a low 30 average ..

    Kartick might have been averaged about 29 in Tests, had he gotten 40-50 games

  • Rough_Fan on June 16, 2014, 11:16 GMT

    Kartik was a poor bowler loved by his state fans only..

  • Mayank_Saxena1286 on June 16, 2014, 9:54 GMT

    Murali Kartik is a gud bowler but i think he don't get much chances to prove himself worthy. MK utilize his skills in county cricket very well, he is one of the best spin bowler in county cricket. I think now he can do Commentary which he already did earlier and he could also be a spin bowling coach. All the best for future MK.

  • on June 16, 2014, 9:44 GMT

    Well done. Wish u a happy retired life. I am pretty sure you will take up the mike to start your new career. You should also thank Shri.Iqbal sir(Ex-EID Parry & Co) who brought you to the world of cricket in chennai when you are doing your schooling. He used to conduct the coaching camp during summer at Madrase-Iz ground opp. to LIC and bring every day one person from the cricket field to encourage the young people to take up cricket. Great sir.

  • anver777 on June 16, 2014, 9:21 GMT

    Well served MK... hope one of his former counties, offer him a role of spin coach & share his knowledge & skills with youngsters to uplift the standard of spin in Eng cricket !!! I guess even as a commentator he's not bad at all... My Best Wishes !!!

  • bigbang07 on June 16, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    Mediocre bowler at international level. Poor avg and SR, especially in tests abroad. No idea what the fuss is about.

  • on June 16, 2014, 1:23 GMT

    Quality bowler who genuinely troubled Australia at their peak and was for many years ahead of Harbhajan who never seemed to get dropped.

    Joins Mohammad Kaif and Irfan Pathan among the Indian careers that never were.

  • on June 15, 2014, 18:36 GMT

    Fiesty character ... wankhede test match in 2004 and Odi in 2007 brought his best. @inswing he made his debut at 23, kumble was the front line and later Harbhajan dominated

  • Venkatb on June 15, 2014, 18:35 GMT

    In many ways he was the Shivalkar of our times, living in the shadows of Kumble and Harbhajan - very utilitarian and clearly a team player. Had Ganguly showed disdain for MK, much as he did with S. Ramesh, and both could clearly walk into a playing XI in their days.

  • on June 15, 2014, 17:05 GMT

    Absolutely wonderful cricketer, he had everything in his favour but him being very vocal was the reason for his downfall too. Silky smooth action, wonderful loop, variations, guile but Sourav Ganguly did not like him which is a fact too. Anyway all the best Kartik for your retired life.

  • on June 15, 2014, 13:50 GMT

    Poor Karthik .. He did NOT get to enjoy the "blessings" of his Captains .. nor the WISE-MEN Selectors .. Any way well done Karthik .. Enjoy yr retired life ..

  • inswing on June 15, 2014, 12:32 GMT

    Not just an excellent bowler, but a feisty and intelligent cricketer. Unfortunate timing for his career, for sure, similar to Dilip Doshi who got into the team only in his 30s. Good job and best wishes Kartik.

  • on June 15, 2014, 10:17 GMT

    respect from srilanka mk.

  • on June 15, 2014, 10:10 GMT

    The most Un-Lucky guy in Indian cricket team, Never got chance to show his ability

  • kodlady on June 15, 2014, 5:58 GMT

    When there was assistance from conditions, he tried to bowl some good deliveries. I guess life wasnt unfair with him considering span of his career and oppurtunity he got to play at highest level. Wish he showed some maturity during in behaviour in his later part of career in Ranji matches, after playing and interacted with legends like Sachin,Dravid,Viv Richards.

  • on June 15, 2014, 5:29 GMT

    one of the best left arm spinners in the world ,good luck for your new innings sir.u were one of my favourite cricketers

  • on June 15, 2014, 4:46 GMT

    A player, who never got his due on international-platform.....Very sad, we actually very often respects the talent...

  • on June 15, 2014, 4:22 GMT

    Most underrated player.Gud spin bowler

  • on June 15, 2014, 3:08 GMT

    He flattered to deceive. Especially since he was Bishen Singh Bedi's student, one expected much better. He rose modestly and was lucky to get the chances that he did.

  • xylo on June 14, 2014, 23:39 GMT

    Kartik was as good a bowler as Kumble and Harbhajan. It was a case of bad timing. Unlike those two players, though, he would have also made an astute captain.

  • Anugarg11 on June 14, 2014, 21:41 GMT

    Hey Karthik! hope you are reading all the comments sincerely wished you were given more chances which you thoroughly deserved. you played gracefully and walked out gracefully. liked your stand for various issues including mankading! best wishes for future

  • himmat on June 14, 2014, 20:00 GMT

    As an Australian supporter.....he was an amazing spin bowler who unfortunately played at the same time when like Kumble and the singh was at their best !!!

  • on June 14, 2014, 18:31 GMT

    Congratulations on a good career. Most will agree that you should have played more for India than you did. You could have played on a few more years, but you chose retirement same as Ajit Agarkar. Welcome to the world of cricket commentary, Murali Kartik. Best of luck for the future job.

  • on June 14, 2014, 17:53 GMT

    He is any day better than the current spinners Ashwin, Jadeja or Ojha..Unlucky guy.

  • Harikrishna_HK on June 14, 2014, 17:44 GMT

    Indian cricket missed a brilliant spinner...and we too

  • John_Mil on June 14, 2014, 17:37 GMT

    Murai Karthik is a Vey Good spinner and one of the best Player. It's unlucky that he was not able to show case his Complete talent to Indian cricket playing more matches. I still remember his Match winning Bowling and Batting against the Aussies, and his Best Test bowling against the same opponent. Same thing like Murali there are so many good players are not given opportunity though they performed well in 1st class matches and IPL. Some times few good players are n the squad but never get the opportunity. It's fate and politics playing on those players in their selection. Selection committee please get rid of the partiality and politics.

  • on June 14, 2014, 17:12 GMT

    we will miss you Kartik....

  • shibu85 on June 14, 2014, 16:00 GMT

    the most under utilised cricketr ...when he last played in an odi he got 6 wickets and never played for india...feel sorry fo r him never the less he was a fighter....all the best for future mate..was ur biggst fan

  • Nampally on June 14, 2014, 15:27 GMT

    A great LH spinner who never got his share of chances & India missed a golden chance of exploiting his talent. Sadly, Murali had such immense talent as an accurate spinner who could spin the ball. Quite honestly I truly believed Murali would get his chance in the last Indian tour of England when India was hit by injuries & had no bowlers. Murali was playing county cricket in England & was taking 10 wkts./2 innings in almost every match. I actually commented in Cricinfo columns for his inclusion. His frequent outbursts, though true did not help his cause. Sadly in this world, being honesty & frankness hurts you more. That was Murali- a Cricketer of super talent & potential but was too frank for his own good. I wish him all the best in his "real life" where he would need to understand & appreciate politics more just to survive & make a decent living unless he is a Professional Engineer or a Doctor or can use his hands to do magic with them. Farewell to a Great Cricketer!

  • Kashi0127 on June 14, 2014, 15:26 GMT

    It is sad some good players never got opportunities, particularly in the early days as no. Of matches were far less than played these days. There are so many opportunities these days, even mediocre players get chances.

    Those missed out on consistent opportunities is a big list: V.V.Kumar, Rajinder Goel, Shivalal Yadav, Raghuram Bhat, Vijay Krishna , Meher Baba come to my mind because all of these played under the shadows of Prasanna, Bedi, Chandra, Venkat. I am sure there are lot of others who did not get opportunities and went out of scene without the world realizing. Glass there is an article on Murali Kartik.

  • sudiptaasi on June 14, 2014, 15:11 GMT

    India's Stuart McGill. Respect.

  • on June 14, 2014, 14:54 GMT

    Murali Kartik - definitely an under achiever. Unlucky through out his career, couldn't cement his place despite giving some match winning performances

  • itsthewayuplay on June 14, 2014, 14:52 GMT

    India is full of so many talented cricketers whose careers have been ruined due to he selectors. Whilst Ganguly was the captain India needed at that time, his misplaced loyalty in Harbarjan meant that Murali international career suffered. A talented bowler who deserved more opportunities. The disappointing thing is the BCCI are making the same mistake again with Mishra and Chawla preferring Jadeja and Ashwin come what may.

  • on June 14, 2014, 14:47 GMT

    Kartik was a good bowler, but India had Anil Kumble, and Harbhajan Singh on top of his game, Kartik couldn't get in. But a good cricketer who played with a fine approach to the game. I have a special place for him in mind after he stood up for the right spirit of the game, challenging conservative establishment philosophy and Mankaded batsmen who were taking unfair advantage and did it as a matter of principle. Farewell, Murali Kartik!.

  • on June 14, 2014, 13:39 GMT

    Good spin bowler also a handy tialender batsman, unluckiest probably in india as he started his career when it was dominated by Kumble and Harbhajan. But had a good time with English county...best of luck to him for future.

  • on June 14, 2014, 13:17 GMT

    quality spinner ignored.i witnessed his best perfomances in both ODI/TEST vs AUS at wankhede TEST in 2004 and ODI in 2007. he played more in county cricket. best of luck for his futurw.

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:52 GMT

    Well, tough for him to be playing under the shadows of Kumble and Harbhajan. He also never enjoyed the confidence of Ganguly, who himself did not rate left arm finger spinners highly and that bias was evident in the team selections as well. He was dangerous on Indian wickets and had he been persisted with, would have developed into a good third spinner. But hey, that's life, not everyone is destined to be a great. He managed to play a decent number of games for India and should be proud of that. Representing India is a no small feat.

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:38 GMT

    good left arm spinner but unlucky and he could not get more chance due to two stalwart Anil and Bajji. we miss you Kartik. Best of Luck

  • godshand on June 14, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    A good and consistent performer in the domestic circuit. Well done, MK. Ifs and buts will always be there, if you were an excellent all rounder then things would have been different but it's important to be 100% dedicated and you were one of the few Indian players in this aspect. All the best for your next voyage !!!

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:33 GMT

    What a great guy, unfortunately he was not shining in the game for shadows in A.Kumble & Harbajan Singhs, Wish u all the best & bright future to Murali Kartik

  • subbuamdavadi on June 14, 2014, 12:26 GMT

    A good cricketer, it was his bad luck that his peak coincided with the captaincy of Ganguly who was such a great player of left arm spin, that he could never trust Kartik. But, Murali will be remembered for his tenacity, aggression and flamboyance.

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  • subbuamdavadi on June 14, 2014, 12:26 GMT

    A good cricketer, it was his bad luck that his peak coincided with the captaincy of Ganguly who was such a great player of left arm spin, that he could never trust Kartik. But, Murali will be remembered for his tenacity, aggression and flamboyance.

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:33 GMT

    What a great guy, unfortunately he was not shining in the game for shadows in A.Kumble & Harbajan Singhs, Wish u all the best & bright future to Murali Kartik

  • godshand on June 14, 2014, 12:34 GMT

    A good and consistent performer in the domestic circuit. Well done, MK. Ifs and buts will always be there, if you were an excellent all rounder then things would have been different but it's important to be 100% dedicated and you were one of the few Indian players in this aspect. All the best for your next voyage !!!

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:38 GMT

    good left arm spinner but unlucky and he could not get more chance due to two stalwart Anil and Bajji. we miss you Kartik. Best of Luck

  • on June 14, 2014, 12:52 GMT

    Well, tough for him to be playing under the shadows of Kumble and Harbhajan. He also never enjoyed the confidence of Ganguly, who himself did not rate left arm finger spinners highly and that bias was evident in the team selections as well. He was dangerous on Indian wickets and had he been persisted with, would have developed into a good third spinner. But hey, that's life, not everyone is destined to be a great. He managed to play a decent number of games for India and should be proud of that. Representing India is a no small feat.

  • on June 14, 2014, 13:17 GMT

    quality spinner ignored.i witnessed his best perfomances in both ODI/TEST vs AUS at wankhede TEST in 2004 and ODI in 2007. he played more in county cricket. best of luck for his futurw.

  • on June 14, 2014, 13:39 GMT

    Good spin bowler also a handy tialender batsman, unluckiest probably in india as he started his career when it was dominated by Kumble and Harbhajan. But had a good time with English county...best of luck to him for future.

  • on June 14, 2014, 14:47 GMT

    Kartik was a good bowler, but India had Anil Kumble, and Harbhajan Singh on top of his game, Kartik couldn't get in. But a good cricketer who played with a fine approach to the game. I have a special place for him in mind after he stood up for the right spirit of the game, challenging conservative establishment philosophy and Mankaded batsmen who were taking unfair advantage and did it as a matter of principle. Farewell, Murali Kartik!.

  • itsthewayuplay on June 14, 2014, 14:52 GMT

    India is full of so many talented cricketers whose careers have been ruined due to he selectors. Whilst Ganguly was the captain India needed at that time, his misplaced loyalty in Harbarjan meant that Murali international career suffered. A talented bowler who deserved more opportunities. The disappointing thing is the BCCI are making the same mistake again with Mishra and Chawla preferring Jadeja and Ashwin come what may.

  • on June 14, 2014, 14:54 GMT

    Murali Kartik - definitely an under achiever. Unlucky through out his career, couldn't cement his place despite giving some match winning performances