Much to the disappointment of Indian cricket fans, one of the most destructive batsman Virender Sehwag has announced his retirement from international cricket, more than two-and-a-half years on from his last appearance for India.
This brings down the curtains on a remarkable career in which he scored 17,253 international runs across formats. Sehwag is the only Indian batsman to score a triple-century in Tests.
With 8586 runs from 104 Test matches, Sehwag stands at fifth in India’s all-time list. In ODIs, he scored 8273 runs, with 15 centuries including the second-highest individual score of 219. In 19 Twenty20 internationals, the right-hander made 394 runs. Aside from all those runs, Sehwag took 40 wickets in Tests and 96 in ODIs.
Sehwag revolutionised the way opening batsman approached Test cricket. Sehwag had debuted in Tests at No 6, scoring a glittering century against South Africa, and was a reluctant candidate to move up the order. But with an innings of 84 in his first innings as an opener, his role was confirmed.
Sehwag went on to revolutionise the opener’s approach, and his strike-rate of 82.23 is the best for any batsman to aggregate over 2000 runs. The 2003-04 season was a breakthrough one for him, with 1040 run in nine Tests including 195 on day one of the MCG Test and India’s first triple century, a 375-ball 309 against Pakistan at Multan.
Incredibly, of his 23 Test centuries, 14 were in excess of 150. Apart from two monumental triple-centuries – the first at Multan and the second versus South Africa at Chennai in 2008 – Sehwag possesses four doubles. Sehwag became the ninth Indian cricketer to play 100 Test matches.
His ODI career was overall somewhat underwhelming, with an average of 35.05 from 251 matches, but 14 of his 15 centuries came in Indian victories.
His last Test was in March 2013 against Australia in Hyderabad and his last ODI came against Pakistan in January 2013. He lost his place in the T20 team in 2012.
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