When Harbhajan Singh stepped on to the field for the first Test against Australia at Chennai, he joined the elite club of cricketers to have played 100 Tests for India. Although his performance in the first innings at Chennai wasn’t worthy of the occasion, it was a significant achievement nonetheless. We tried to rate the ‘centurions’ of India cricket in order of the impact they made on the team’s fortunes.
Steve Waugh had termed Australia’s tour of India in 2001 as the ‘final frontier’. Cricket pundits felt this was their best chance of winning in India; they had arrived in India on a 15-match winning streak. As things transpired, Australia failed to clinch the series in spite of some inspirational performances, and an unprecedented fightback from India.
The first match of the five-match ODI series between India and Pakistan played at the National Stadium in Karachi as part of the ‘friendship’ series in 2004 set the tone for the remainder of the games in the series. It was a high-scoring contest, which went right into the last over.
We often talk about cricketers and retirement. A number of players who hang up their gloves end up entering the commentary box, and then remain there for years. It is a lucrative career in itself, and the ex-players also get an opportunity to share the views on the game they love and have played with passion.
It is not easy to replace Rahul Dravid. It wouldn’t be wrong if we go to the extent of saying that it is impossible. However, in the few Tests that Cheteshwar Pujara has represented India, he has proved that he is the best choice to take over from Dravid at the number three position.