TN batsman Sharath retires from first-class cricket

Published: Sunday, May 6, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Chennai:He has been the backbone of Tamil Nadu cricket for the last 15 years and his sound technique and temperament earned him the sobriquet Mr Consistent.

Thirty five year-old Sridharan Sharath, who excelled with the bat in the domestic circuit, announced his retirement from first-class cricket at a press conference here on Friday.

The former Tamil Nadu captain, is the only player from the state to play more than 100 Ranji trophy matches.

He had scored 8,390 runs in 103 matches, with 27 centuries, at an average of just over 52.

Sharath's only regret was that he could not figure in the national side despite being scoring heavily in Ranji matches.

''I feel sad that I never got an opportunity to represent the country, but I take pride in having represented my state for more than a decade, he said.

''In 1998-99, I was among the probables for the Asia Cup. That was the closest I came close to being in the Indian team. I lost my place to Vinod Kambli, he recalls.

An accident in 1993 almost ended his career but he fought back bravely to play again.

''When I played my 100th game for Tamil Nadu it felt great. I never thought that I would play this long. The accident I suffered in 1993 was so serious (multiple fracture in the left leg) that I never thought I could play my normal game again, recalled Sharath.

Tamil Nadu Skipper S Suresh, who was also present, later told reporters that it would be very difficult to fill the void caused by the retirement of Sharath in the middle order.

''He is a very experienced cricketer. It's very difficult to fill the void. It will take some time to get a player like him (in the middle order),'' he added.

Tamil Nadu Coach W V Raman lauded the services rendered by Sharath.


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