Rahul Dravid who announced his retirement from international cricket recently was felicitated at a function by BCCI at a five star hotel in Mumbai on Tuesday. Though Sachin Tendulkar and BCCI President N Srinivasan were conspicuous by their absence, almost all of Dravid’s contemporaries including Kumble, Ganguly, Srinath, Laxman were present at the function. A lot of veterans were also graced the occasion. Dhoni with the entire Indian team that I set to fly to South Africa for a T20 was also part of the evening.
On an emotion filled evening players Dravid played with had many words of praise for him. "He was someone who would walk through obstacles, not someone who would go around the obstacles, he was someone who was ready to do anything and everything needed for the team: whether it came to opening the innings, wicketkeeping, or standing at slips or silly point, his answer was always 'yes'” said Dhoni, who also praise Dravid’s wicketkeeping skills.
"A lot of people talk about me being the captain, but behind the scenes lot of work was done by you [Dravid] and John, which made Indian cricket successful," said Ganguly under whose captaincy Dravid played some of his most memorable innings.
“When we were having discussions, we'd be lost in our own thoughts. He would probably be preparing [mentally] for the next day's batting, or analysing the day's play," Kumble said.
Laxman in a moving speech during which he urged everybody to stand up and give Dravid a standing ovation said, "Even after so many achievements, he has always been level headed and for me that is his greatness".
Dravid in his own speech thanked his former teammates, wished the present team luck and expressed gratitude towards BCCI for extending support. Dravid was himself on verge of tears and said "I'd made a pact with myself that I wouldn't cry at any of the functions over the last two or three weeks. I think that has been tested to the limit today".