Kolkata: Overwhelmed by the emotional farewell given to Sachin Tendulkar at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, Sourav Ganguly lamented that he could not play on his home soil in his last Test.Terming Tendulkar’s farewell the most befitting, Ganguly said: “I’m very happy for him,” but appeared a little upset as he added: “I could not play my last match at the Eden Gardens… Even, VVS Laxman was denied a farewell match (after his impromptu announcement).”
Ganguly, however, said he was happy to have retired with his head held high in the Nagpur Test against Australia in November 2008, which India won by 172 runs.”I’m happy to have retired on a winning cause and with runs (85 in the first innings)…”Asked whether the weak opposition such as the West Indies would rob some credit of Tendulkar’s knock of 74, Ganguly said: “I don’t think so.”
“”Indian cricket’s brand value has gone up because of the farewell given by the people of Mumbai. This will increase’s the game’s popularity,” Ganguly said.“The love he was given by the people in Wankhede is unmatchable. He would not have got that had he retired in South Africa. One can experience the atmosphere only by being there at the Wankhede. It was a lifetime experience.”
It was vintage Tendulkar in his swansong innings as the Mumbai ‘boy’ struck a charming 74 against the West Indies and Ganguly said it was the best knock of the iconic batsman in three years.”He did not do well in the last two-three years. His last knock of 74 in his farewell innings was the best ever I’ve seen in last three years. It seemed as if he’s relieved of the burden finally. He batted with the fluency of a youngster.””It was the most satisfying moment for me as he left cricket on a high, with runs under his belt. I was really happy for him,” Ganguly told a bengali news channel from Mumbai.
Tendulkar shed tears on his last day in Indian colours after the Test against the West Indies ended and Ganguly said those were tears of joy. “I never had seen him breaking down. Perhaps those were the tears of joy. He has achieved everything in his career. Life has come full circle twice for him. He has achieved thrice one can. There should not be any regrets in his life.”