There is nothing more worse than a moment when a legendary batsman misses out on a huge achievement despite being too close, due to retirement – either sudden or pre-planned – finishing their magnificent careers. Listed here are the top five batsmen who just fell short of such huge milestones due to their retirement.
- Sachin Tendulkar – 15,921 Test runs
You just name it; Sachin Tendulkar has all records, except 16000 Test runs. He entered his last series with only 163 runs to go with at least four innings to bat in to cross 16000 Test runs. In the first Test at Kolkata, he got out on 10 for the first time he batted and it was the fate that Tendulkar got the chance to bat only two times in both matches. In his farewell Test innings, he fell for only 74, eventually retired with 15,921 Test runs from his glorious career, i.e. only 79 runs short.
- Brian Lara – 11,953 runs
Like Tendulkar, he also fell short of Test runs. The 2007 World Cup turned out to be his last international series with 131 Tests under his arsenal. He announced his retirement when West Indies won against Bangladesh that the upcoming match would be his last against England. The southpaw ended up just 47 runs short of rare achievement of 12,000 runs. In his final Test series, he scored 448 against Pakistan in 2006.
- Adam Gilchrist – 287 ODIs and 96 Tests
He fell short of a rare achievement of 300 ODIs and 100 Tests as a wicket-keeper. He announced his retirement mid-way in the Adelaide Test in 2008 against India. He declared that he would retire in international cricket just after the tri-series with Sri Lanka. He got retired with 287 ODIs and 96 Tests under his belt. He was very close to complete his triple century of ODIs and a century of Tests. He would have been the first wicket-keeper to achieve both in his time if he had gone to complete both.
- Inzamam ul Haq – 8830 runs
Since 1992, he scored 8830 Test runs and he fell only two runs short of reaching and three runs to beat the record set by Miandad, who scored 8832 runs in his name. However, the current record in Pakistan belongs to next former skipper Younis Khan, who retired with 10,099 runs in 2017. In his last Test at Lahore in 2007 against Sri Lanka, he got dismissed for 3 runs off 2 balls and stumped while getting down the wicket to Paul Harris with a hope to have record made by Javed Miandad.
- Andrew Strauss – 50 Tests being a captain
When England lost to South Africa 0-2 in 2012 at their home land, Strauss declared his retirement from Test, while he had already left one-day internationals in 2011 and finished only one Test short of previous record of 51 as captain in England, by Michael Vaughan. Now it belongs to the former opening batsman Alastair Cook.