Former Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly in his autobiography ‘A century is not enough‘ has revealed how he felt after being dropped from the Rest of India (ROI) squad. Ganguly mentions how the retirement decision was hard for him and he was still to overcome it when suddenly he came to know he has been dropped from the ROI squad.
As quoted in the book, Sourav wrote, “Me dropped? The Asian batsman and player of the year left out from a Rest of India team, I asked myself. After having scored consistently for the last three and a half years for India? But why? It can’t have been my skill as I had only failed in one series in Sri Lanka where, apart from one batsman, none of my colleagues had done well. Yet they had all got picked.”
Ganguly also mentioned that how difficult it is being a sportsman in India. He compares a cricketers life with a common man, he wrote, “Never forget that through their career sportsmen often have only a single option for work. Rejection from national selectors or the cricket team closes all doors. Most of you can switch jobs. If you are not happy with the Ambanis, you can apply to the Tatas. If the Tatas reject you, you can try Infosys. The paths are many. For us cricketers, we have only one job. India placement. There is no other job. It is simple – India or nothing.”
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After being dropped Ganguly decided to play for JP Atrya Memorial Trophy as he wanted to prove himself and the only way to do it was by scoring runs in domestic cricket. He admits that those days were one of his toughest and his love for the same kept him going.
Describing his love for the game, Sourav wrote, “It was the seven toughest days of my cricketing career. After having played in more than 400 international games, I had to play a tournament where I did not even know any of the players. Although I had scored more than 18,000 international runs, the runs I had to score here felt as urgent to me as in any international Test match. These runs were talking to me from the inside. Telling me, you are still good enough, still capable of scoring runs anywhere. Your love has not deserted you. The love for the game.”