Calcutta: VVS Laxman had failed to contact Mahendra Singh Dhoni before announcing his retirement decision. But that did not stop the Indian captain to pay the stylish Hyderabadi a rich tribute, saying that his absence would be felt by the entire team.
“The whole team will miss u VVS. One of the best human beings I have ever met in my life. Spent a lot of time with him while batting and fielding and the chat would always be about the team. will miss him whenever the team cuts cake. Personally I will really miss u LACHU BHAI,” Dhoni tweeted.
On Saturday, while announcing his retirement despite being selected for the upcoming two-Test series against New Zealand, Laxman had said: “I did try to get in touch with Dhoni, but as you know it’s very difficult to reach him.” The apparent incommunicado had raised a few eyebrows in some quarters.
Not far behind in applauding Laxman was youngster Virat Kohli. “A very very special cricketer and a more special person. A true inspiration and class personified! You will be missed laxman bhai. take a bow,” Kohli tweeted.
For Yuvraj Singh, Laxman’s long-time teammate, the middle-order batsman has a heart of gold. “Really sad vvs has retired! I was hoping he would play end of the year! Nicest human being ever, Some1 with a heart of gold An absolute team man and mattered the most when india needed him. Great in my books a legend who played for india And a very special friend! Dear very very special you will be missed!,” Yuvraj tweeted.
And not only the stars, other cricketers who have shared the dressing room with Laxman at some point of time, also paid their tributes.
Leggie Amit Mishra tweeted: “It alwz been an amazing experience to share dressing room wid d legend like Laxman bhai. On & off field, he is a true one whom u can luk after. I consider him nt nly a gr8 cricketer but a very nice human being who is alwz genuine towards his game & life..”
Speedster Sreesanth said: “Very very special laxman bhai.. One of the gr8tst cricketrs india has ever seen.. Will surely be missd. God bless. Will always cherish those lovely moments with u brother. Ur one of the top most true gentleman cricketers ever. u will surely be missd..”
The salutes for the elegant batsman, meanwhile, was not restricted to the cricket fraternity. Tributes poured in from various other sportspersons as well.
“Thank you for all the memories VVS. Cricket World will mourn, Aussie cricket will celebrate,” tweeted tennis star Mahesh Bhupathi, the owner of 12 Grand Slam titles.
In the list of admirers was also Athens Olympics silver-medallist shooter Rajyavardhan Rathore. “India will miss VVS Laxman, rock solid batsman, a great ambassador for cricket & above all one of the best human beings I have met,” he said.