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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Gautam Gambhir Performs His Final Act At Top Level Cricket, Takes The Last Bow For Delhi

Moments after Gautam Gambhir walked back into the dressing room, one banner after another was rolled out at the Ferozeshah Kotla.

Even as captain Dhruv Shorey was battling it out with an inexperienced batting lineup to grind out a lead while chasing Andhra’s 390, the rest of the team was busy putting up a banner from their balcony reading: “Well played Gautam Gambhir. Thank you.”

That the dressing room waited for him to complete his hundred and be dismissed was a baffling, given he resumed the day batting on 92.

Gautam Gambhir Performs His Final Act At Top Level Cricket


For so much of anticipation and excitement amongst the few hundreds who turned up at the stadium, Gambhir’s reaction after he scampered for the second run to complete his century was a bit of an anti-climax.

There were no fist pumps, taking off the helmet or holding the bat aloft. He merely walked down to his partner Shorey, shook hands and just raised the bat for a millisecond towards the dressing room, that was all.

It was like he was too embarrassed to break into a celebration which has been associated with this ultra-passionate cricketer. Perhaps, he was too focused on ensuring Delhi could eke out maximum points from the match.

Gautam Gambhir Performs His Final Act At Top Level Cricket


It may be a fairytale ending for many but Gambhir’s reaction screamed of his pride as a player at the highest level of the game.

“He (Gambhir) was being himself in the middle. I’ll treasure batting with him. He had his sight on the target. His approach was no different all through the innings,” Shorey, who stitched a 113-run second-wicket partnership with Gambhir, said after the game.

Once he edged the off-spinning delivery of Shoaib Khan to wicketkeeper KS Bharat on 112, Delhi batting found out how difficult it was to get going on the typically low and slow Kotla pitch. Shorey stuck it out as the most senior batsman before falling for 98.

Gautam Gambhir Performs His Final Act At Top Level Cricket


That Delhi did manage to earn the lead, it had more to do with the platform set by Gambhir up the order. Gambhir had done the job of an apt opener in what could be his last first-class knock.

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