Gautam Gambhir scripted the perfect farewell in his last cricket game as he scored a magnificent hundred against Andhra to give Delhi the advantage in the Ranji Trophy encounter at the Feroz Shah Kotla on Saturday. Andhra were boosted by a magnificent knock of 187 by Ricky Bhui but when they were dismissed for 390, all eyes turned on Gambhir. The left-hander was given a magnificent guard of honour by the Andhra players and one of the fans even ran on to the Kotla wicket to touch Gambhir’s feat. He started off aggressively on the second day and by the close, Delhi had built a good platform. Gambhir achieved his milestone at the beginning of day 3 and this will be another magnificent chapter in the life of this cricketer.
However, Gambhir fell for a magnificent 112 as he edged Shoaib Mohammad Khan to wicketkeeper KS Bharath. It could be difficult to see Gambhir bat a second time, considering that Delhi need to build a sizeable lead with only one and a half days remaining.
On Tuesday, Gambhir announced his retirement from all forms of cricket. "After more than 15 years of cricket for my country, I want to retire from playing this beautiful game. The most difficult decisions are often taken with the heaviest of hearts. And with one heavy heart, I’ve decided to make an announcement that I’ve dreaded all my life," the left-hander said on Twitter while sharing a video message.
Recently, the Delhi player brushed aside reports that he had differences with former Indian cricket team skipper MS Dhoni. In a chat with Navbharat Times, Gambhir, who was part of the 2011 World Cup winning squad, regretted that he did get a chance to help India try and defend the title during the 2015 World Cup held in Australia and New Zealand.
He helped Delhi to the Ranji Trophy title in 2007/08 despite playing with a bruised palm against Uttar Pradesh. His gutsy effort helped him into the India side and he helped them win the 2007 World T20 title. His 75 against Pakistan was the difference in a narrow five-run win.
His epic 11-hour rearguard against New Zealand in Napier 2009, in which he slammed 137, helped India draw the match and win a series in New Zealand for the first time in 41 years. In 2011, more glory came his way as his magnificent 97 helped India beat Sri Lanka by six wickets in the final of the 2011 World Cup to help the country win the tournament for the first time in 28 years.
In the Indian Premier League, he changed the fortunes of Kolkata Knight Riders by becoming captain and helping them to two titles in 2012 and 2014.