Always enjoyed batting at the Eden Gardens: Laxman

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Published: Wednesday, November 16, 2011, 17:13 [IST]
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A very special ground: Laxman

Kolkata, Nov 16: VVS Laxman's record at Eden Gardens has been remarkable for over a decade now and still going strong. The wristy batsman scored his fifth century - an unbeaten 176 against West Indies at the iconic venue on Tuesday.

Including Tuesday's century Laxman scored 1,217 runs at the Eden Gardens with an average of 110.63 which is the third highest average amongst players who scored 1,000 runs at a particular venue.

Legend Don Bradman leads with an average of 128.53 in Melbourne followed by Greg Chappell at 111.17 in Brisbane.

Laxman is not sure what makes him succeed at Edens. "It is a very special ground, definitely a very very special ground. It feels great. Especially getting a hundred for India. It's not anything different today," he said after the day's play.

"But I have always enjoyed batting at the Eden Gardens. Not just batting, all the Test matches I have played here, I have really enjoyed playing here."

"It's a great ground with a lot of history. Probably the spectators, even though they were not a lot in this Test match, make it special, the people of Kolkata make it special and it is a special ground for all of us."

Another stylish Hyderabadi, Former captain Mohammad Azaruddin was the closest to Laxman scoring five centuries with an average of 107.50 at the venue.

Laxman's most important knock at the venue was against Australia when he scored 281 in March 2001 helping India win a losing battle. The knock has become a part of cricketing history.   [Scorecard]

"Whenever I come here, all of you remind me about the 2001 Test match. That Test gives a lot of inspiration to me and all the guys who were involved in that game, So it's always a great feeling coming back to the Eden," he said.

The very next year Laxman scored an unbeaten 154 against the Carl Hooper led West-Indies side. A 112 against bitter-rivals Pakistan in 2007, the last century came against South Africa scoring an unbeaten 143 last year helping India to an innings victory and retain their place as the world's top Test team.

These centuries at the iconic stadium has made Laxman a crowd favourite in the last decade.

Laxman was surprised at the low turnover at the Eden. "It was surprising, even during the One-dayer against England. I saw it on TV. We always felt that Kolkata was one place where you had a lot of support for Test match cricket."

"It's quite strange, I am not sure what is the exact reason behind that," he said.


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