It was on March 18, 2012, when Sachin Tendulkar played the final ODI of his illustrious career. It was a league stage encounter against Pakistan in the Asia Cup and it was a must-win game for India after they had lost their previous game against Bangladesh – the game in which the master blaster scored his 100th international ton.
Pakistan scored 329 batting first in Dhaka. Mohammad Hafeez and Nasir Jamshed had smashed tons and had taken Pakistan to a mammoth total. However, India chased it down really well. Tendulkar and Rohit Sharma stroked half-centuries and a magnificent ton by Virat Kohli drove India home with 13 balls to spare.
Tendulkar made an announcement of his ODI retirement in December 2012 but he hadn’t played a single 50-over game for India since then. Hence, it’s been eight years since the legendary cricketer last donned the India jersey.
Thus, here we look back at that Indian playing XI and see where they are now:
1. Gautam Gambhir
That particular Asia Cup game against Pakistan wasn’t a memorable one for Gautam Gambhir. He registered a two-ball duck as he was out LBW to Mohammad Hafeez. Post this game, Gambhir himself didn’t last too long in the Indian team across formats. He was already on the decline and was eventually dropped in 2013.
There were a couple of times that the Delhi southpaw made a comeback as well. He was the reserve opener in two different phases – in 2014 and 2016. In 2014, he played a couple of Test matches in England where he failed miserably, just like most of the other Indian batsmen and was subsequently dropped again. In 2016, he made a comeback to the Test side and played a handful of games as the frontline openers were all injured.
His last international game came in November 2016 and in 2018, he hung up his boots as well. Gambhir is now a political leader and is associated with the BJP.
2. Sachin Tendulkar
After scoring his 100th ton, Sachin Tendulkar looked refreshed and came out all guns blazing in this game. It was his partnership with Virat Kohli that set the tone for this chase. The master blaster scored a quickfire half-century and added 133 runs with Kohli for the second wicket before being dismissed for 52.
Tendulkar continued to play Test cricket more the next 18 months before he finally bid adieu to international cricket in November 2013. His personal form wasn’t too great either. Hence, it was an emotional send-off for the master on his home ground in Mumbai.
However, since then, he’s the icon of the Mumbai Indians (MI) team in the IPL. He recently featured in the Road Safety series and was the captain of the team India Legends.
3. Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli was absolutely sublime in that game against Pakistan in 2012. He smashed the Pakistan bowling attack to all corners of the Shere Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka and they simply had no answers. Coming out to bat on the third ball of the innings, Kohli dominated like never before.
For the second time in as many months, he played a world-class innings (remember that 133 not out in Hobart?). This time, he smoked a stunning 183 off just 148 balls. The knock included 22 fours and one six before he got out with 12 runs needed.
Since then, Kohli has become one of the world’s best batsman across formats. He is now within touching distance of equalling and going past Sachin Tendulkar‘s 49 ODI tons. He has dominated batting charts across formats. Kohli is currently the Indian captain across all three formats.
4. Rohit Sharma
Not a lot of people know but Rohit Sharma played a decent knock in this game as well. With Kohli hogging all the limelight, Rohit played second fiddle really well. He scored a patient 68 and shared a fine 172-run stand with Kohli for the third wicket.
At that time, the Mumbaikar hadn’t started opening the batting. It was only in January 2013 that he opened the innings for the first time in ODI cricket. But it was really the 2013 Champions Trophy that set the tone for him and he hasn’t looked back since.
He is currently India’s vice-captain in white-ball cricket and has recently started opening in Test cricket as well. His numbers in white-ball cricket are outstanding and along with Kohli, he’s been one of the reasons for India’s success in the shorter formats. Rohit has been one of the best openers in white-ball cricket since 2013.
5. Suresh Raina
Suresh Raina was one of the vital cogs in the Indian middle-order in 2012. He played a key role for quite a few years. The Uttar Pradesh lad was a good finisher, a brilliant fielder and could chip in with useful overs of part-time off-spin as well.
In that game against Pakistan, Raina chipped in with a couple of overs and didn’t have much to do with the bat. He came out to bat with 25 needed and scored a six-ball 12 to wrap things up. Till the 2015 World Cup, Raina continued to be the glue in the Indian ODI middle order. He was dropped in between but came back strongly.
However, his decline started post the 2015 World Cup. He did make a comeback in 2018 but it didn’t last long. Raina continues to play the IPL and is a part of the Chennai Super Kings (CSK) side.
6. MS Dhoni (C & WK)
MS Dhoni was the Indian captain back then across all three formats. He didn’t have much to do either in this game. He just hit the winning runs with a boundary. However, about 30 months after this game, Dhoni hung up his boots in Test cricket and shocked the world.
He wanted to concentrate a lot more on the shorter formats. Moreover, he led India to the semi-finals in the 2015 World Cup and 2016 World T20 as well. In January 2017, he gave up captaincy across formats and played as a wicket-keeper batsman in white-ball cricket.
He was one of the vital cogs in the middle-order and he blew hot and cold with the bat. However, Dhoni was last seen in India colours in the heart-breaking semi-final loss against New Zealand in 2019. He’s been on a sabbatical since then. The speculation around his retirement has continued.
7. Yusuf Pathan
It is not noticed but that Asia Cup game against Pakistan was also the last time Yusuf Pathan featured in an ODI for India. He didn’t bat and bowled just five overs, conceding 30 runs. Apart from this, there is just one more international game that the senior Pathan brother featured in and that was in a T20I in South Africa later that month.
Since then, Yusuf has been playing domestic cricket regularly. He has been an active member in the IPL as well. However, he went unsold in this year’s IPL auction.
The off-spinning all-rounder recently played for Baroda in all three formats of the Indian domestic season. Moreover, Pathan is also active in social work. He has often helped victims of floods and other calamities.
8. Irfan Pathan
Irfan Pathan was one of the premier seam-bowling all-rounders for India at that time. In that game against Pakistan, he returned with figures of 1/69 and didn’t bat. Unlike his brother Yusuf, Irfan continued playing for India after this tournament as well but it didn’t last long.
2012 was the last time Pathan featured in international cricket. He played the ODI series in Sri Lanka before featuring in the India side in the World T20 later that year. But the left-handed all-rounder was a popular name in the IPL and continued playing the Indian T20 league.
He switched his domestic team to Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) as well towards the end of his career. In fact, Pathan finished his career with J&K in February 2019. He announced his retirement from all forms of cricket earlier this year. However, Pathan did play the Road Safety series. He is often seen in the Star Sports studio as a commentator and expert.
9. Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin was the only frontline spinner in the XI that played against Pakistan in Asia Cup in 2012. He bowled his quota of 10 overs and was India’s most economical bowler. The Tamil Nadu off-spinner returned with figures of 1/56 and he was the one who provided the first breakthrough.
He was a crucial part of India’s white-ball plans until 2017. Ashwin became India’s premier spinner in Test cricket and his white-ball form waned. Hence, he was dropped from the ODI side post the Caribbean tour in 2017.
However, Ashwin is still one of India’s premier spinner in the longest format of the game. He has taken 365 wickets in Test cricket at an average of 25.43 which includes 27 five-wicket hauls.
10. Praveen Kumar
Before Bhuvneshwar Kumar broke on to the scene, it was Praveen Kumar who was India’s premier new-ball bowler. He could swing the ball both ways and get batsmen in trouble. He opened the bowling in this game too and had figures of 2/77 from 10 overs.
However, like Yusuf Pathan, this was Praveen Kumar’s last ODI and he played just one more international game after this which was the T20I in South Africa later that month. But he continued to play first-class cricket for Uttar Pradesh till early 2018.
However, it was in October 2018 that Kumar announced his retirement and later played the T10 league. Since then, he hasn’t been around the scene and there isn’t a lot of news around him either.
11. Ashoke Dinda
This is one name that might surprise a few but Ashok Dinda was one of the three pacers that played in that game against Pakistan. He picked up 2/47 from the eight overs that he bowled. In fact, those were the best figures by any bowler in that game.
Back at that time, he was constantly in and around the Indian team in white-ball cricket. In fact, in that 2012-13 season, he did feature quite a bit in the XI as well. But that was his last season in international cricket. Dinda last featured in an international game in an ODI against England in January 2013.
The Bengal pacer was a regular in the IPL for a few years before falling off the radar. However, Dinda continues to play domestic cricket for Bengal. He played the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy and Vijay Hazare Trophy and also featured in one Ranji game.
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