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India debates Tendulkar’s one-day future

India’s cricket greats have begun talking about a topic that was considered unthinkable a year ago -- Sachin Tendulkar's retirement from the sport.

Or, at least, the need for the record-breaking batsman to quit one-day cricket to prolong his Test career, like former Australian captain Ricky Ponting did this week.

“Maybe his time has come,” former World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev said of the “Little Master” on the Headlines Today news channel. “Every player has his time. Age is not on his side as it was earlier.” Tendulkar, who turns 39 in April, is not only the world's leading batsman in both the Test and one-day formats, but also the longest-serving international cricketer, having made his debut in 1989. Fans have been left on tenterhooks as Tendulkar, who has scored a record 51 Test and 48 one-day centuries, struggles to reach the unprecedented milestone of 100 international hundreds.

Tendulkar has now gone 11 Tests and nine one-day internationals (ODIs) without a century since making 111 against South Africa in the World Cup in March last year. It is the longest gap for the prolific batsman without a three-figure knock, even though scores of 85, 91, 94 and 80 in the interim suggest his form has not deserted him.

The immediate spark for talk of Tendulkar quitting is his indifferent run in the ongoing tri-series in Australia where he has managed just 90 runs in five games at an average of 18.

AFP

 

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