India news : VVS Laxman retires from international cricket | Cricket News | India v New Zealand | ESPN Cricinfo
VVS Laxman has announced his retirement from international cricket with immediate effect, ahead of the home Test series against New Zealand starting August 23 in his hometown Hyderabad. Laxman, 37, has had a glittering career since his debut in 1996 but his recent Test form had raised question marks over his continuance in the side. He will, however, play for his domestic team Hyderabad this year in the Ranji Trophy.
"I would like to announce my retirement from international cricket with immediate effect," Laxman said at an emotional press conference in Hyderabad. "I have always kept my country's success and need ahead of my personal aspirations. And while I would love contributing to the team's success, especially against England and Australia, I think this is the right to give opportunity to the youngsters in home conditions ahead of international assignments.
"It was a tough decision to take, I have always listened to my inner conscience. I have always done that right through my career. There was a lot of debate in the last four days. I felt this is the right time to move on."
Laxman represented India in 134 Tests, scoring 8781 runs at 45.97. He made his debut against South Africa in the home series in 1996 but shot to the limelight with a knock of 167 against Australia in Sydney in 2000. Perhaps his greatest achievement was his 281 at Eden Gardens in Kolkata in 2001, against Australia, then the highest score by an Indian batsman in Tests. Part of a record stand with Rahul Dravid, it set up a stunning victory for the home team after following on and ended Australia's consecutive 16-match winning streak.
Laxman last played an ODI in 2006 but had, by then, become a regular in the Test side and played his 100th Test in 2008, against Australia in Nagpur. Laxman made six of his 17 Test centuries against Australia, with an average of 49.67 in 29 Tests and success both home and away.
His performances in the eight Tests during India's disastrous tours of England and Australia in 2011 were disappointing. He averaged 22.75 in England and 19.38 in Australia, prompting some to call for him being dropped from the side with a long-term view of grooming a youngster to take his place.
Laxman confirmed he'd be playing for Hyderabad this domestic season and hoped he could help them win the Ranji Trophy.