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Finally, VVS makes the cut

Laxman, the antithesis of modern Indian cricketers, is one of the least talked about achievers of his generation. After Tuesday the 25th, he can afford to say a few things about how good it feels to get something which he had stopped thinking about. Padma Shri glory | The other 2011 Padma Shri awardees

cricket Updated: Jan 26, 2011 01:01 IST
Atreyo Mukhopadhyay

For some sportspersons, recognition comes instantly. Others have to wait. The unfortunate ones among those waiting have to endure the sight of less deserving performers becoming celebrities overnight and bagging the laurels.

When this becomes a part of life, the pain ceases. The show goes on and the player keeps doing his job, oblivious of rewards and mindful of his duty alone, for the rest is beyond his control. A time comes when he forgets that the world has not acknowledged his efforts.

In an interview with HT last November, VVS Laxman said not getting the Padma Shri had stopped disturbing him. “Lack of recognition used to play on my mind, but it doesn't anymore," Laxman had said. He didn't have to say more because his bat had been doing the talking over the years with increasing effectiveness.

Laxman, the antithesis of modern Indian cricketers, is one of the least talked about achievers of his generation.

Numbers don't reflect the true greatness of his deeds, his name is not taken in the same breath with a few others when giants of Indian cricket are discussed and unlike many of his peers Laxman is hardly visible when he is not playing.

Following a quirky law of nature, the batsman with an artistic touch made lack of recognition directly proportional to performance.

Taking gallantry a step ahead, Laxman became a specialist in excelling under pressure. Laxman has done it at home and away, against the best of opponents of his generation, and on many occasions he has done it batting with the tail. These situations bring the fighter out of the calm and polite man.

After Tuesday the 25th, Laxman can afford to say a few things about how good it feels to get something which he had stopped thinking about.