Before Sunday morning, all talk about Sachin Tendulkar revolved around whether he would be available for the ODI series against Pakistan. If he was not going to be part of a landmark series, it would be through his own will and fitness-related. At least that’s what we thought.

But then, there was surprise and shock when it was revealed that he has decided to quit the one-day game. What prompted him to do so before a selection meeting? There is a bit of mystery to his decision and there was no shortage of theories doing the rounds ever since his retirement became official.

True, Tendulkar was at the receiving end from the critics when the amount of runs was not in direct proportion to his reputation and ability. But there was no announcement after he played his last series – the Asia Cup in Bangladesh. He scored a fifty in his last ODI (against Pakistan) and a hundred in the game before that for his much-awaited 100th international century.

For the last few months, Vijay Merchant’s words about retirement (‘people must ask ‘why’ and not ‘why not’) have been quoted ad nauseum. Even amidst calls for his retirement from the game, Tendulkar has ensured that most people ended up asking ‘why’.

More importantly, India will not find itself in deep waters with Tendulkar’s exit. MS Dhoni’s team has been formidable with or without the greatest one-day batsman ever. This fact is a huge tick mark for the team. To Tendulkar, we must say, thanks for the one-day wonders