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Ganguly heralds Gilchrist as greatest ever wicket-keeper batsman

Adelaide, Jan 26 (UNI) Former India captain Sourav Ganguly today heralded Adam Gilchrist as the 'greatest wicket-keeper batsman' ever in the history of cricket, claiming the Australians would be hard hit by his absence.

''I think he must be the greatest wicketkeeper-batsman ever,'' Ganguly said.

Gilchrist announced his retirement from Test cricket today at the end of the third day's play against India. He will also retire from one-day international cricket at the conclusion of the upcoming Commonwealth Bank series.

The ongoing Test against India at Adelaide will be his last and will also signal end to his career with Western Australia.

Ganguly further added that the Australian team will surely miss his services and will be hard pressed to find a replacement for Gilchrist.

''A very, very dangerous player to be up against. He leaves a big void.'' However, the Indian, like many was surprised too at the decision saying, ''We're all very surprised by the decision and what prompted him to retire at this point. But I guess he will know best.'' Gilchrist, 36, has scored 5556 at a phenomenal average of 47.89 runs per innings in which he scored 17 centuries and 26 fifties.

He made his debut against Pakistan at Brisbane in 1999 and has a staggering strike rate in both forms of the game. His career Test strike-rate in Tests is 81.97 whereas in ODIs his domination over other cricketing nations is at a strike rate of 96.90.

Ganguly reminisced about some of the best innings which the world's most successful wicket-keeper has played.

''I remember the innings he played against us in Mumbai in 2001. He changed the match in no time.

''And of course the hundred in the World Cup final last year.

He was a big-match player and knew how to make an impact. He's a great person too. We got along really well.'' UNI XC RAR AB RAI2022

Story first published: Saturday, January 26, 2008, 20:32 [IST]
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