Former New Zealand cricket great Richard Hadlee believes that India should persist with the veteran trio of Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman for some more time.
"You can't be talking about Tendulkar, Laxman and Dravid's retirement. You can't afford to lose all these players in one go. You need to see the young players go through," Hadlee told PTI in an exclusive interview in Bangalore on Friday.
The veteran cricketer, however, said the final decision rests with the Indian selectors and insisted that they would take a call on the issue anyway.
Deadly Duo: Sachin Tendulkar (left) with VVS Laxman Pic/Getty Images
Hadlee said Tendulkar has still got some time left in his hand, but pointed out that the champion batsman was under pressure to get the historical 100th international hundred.
"When you are in search of a major milestone, like I was trying to beat Ian Botham's world record of maximum Test wickets, it creates a lot of pressure. I am sure Tendulkar might be feeling the same way," he said.
The New Zealander, who has 431 Test wickets to his credit, said if Tendulkar gets that elusive century he would probably get two or three tons in quick succession. "As far as Indian team is concerned, all they want is he gets to that hundred and they can all relax and get on with the game," he added.
"I remember people talking about Tendulkar's retirement during 2007 World Cup in the West Indies, but he went on to amass runs for the next five years. "It may be a year since Tendulkar hasn't scored a hundred, but he has still batted pretty well and scored some good sixties, seventies and eighties and held the Indian innings together," Hadlee said.
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