It's quite an emotional moment for all cricket lovers - especially for Ricky Ponting fans.
It has to be. After all, you don't witness a Ricky Ponting being born every now and then.
The Australian great has called time on his cricketing career, which saw him become his country's highest run-getter.
Ponting, 37, has scored 13366 runs at an average of 52.21 in the 167 Tests he has played with a highest score of 257. He has also scored 41 centuries and 62 half-centuries in his 17-year-old cricketing career.
"It struck me only a few weeks ago that my preparation was good as it'd been. But... my performance hadn't been good enough for the team," Ponting said.
"I'm very comfortable with the decision I've made. Timing-wise it's the right time, at the end of a series. There's not much more I can give."
As soon as Ponting announced his retirement, reactions from cricketers, former cricketers and fans kept pouring in justifying the fact he’s one of the most endearing figures in world cricket.
True, very true.
He entertained all of us with his impeccable batting prowess while the rest of the world watched in complete awe.
In a fitting tribute, Tanya Aldred, a well-known sports journalist, commented that "the golden era of cricket is nearing its end with Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting and Jacques Kallis, the last three remnants of the magnificent generation, playing in the final stages of their careers."
"There is a real sadness in watching genius fade, in watching the clock slowly stop. The sun is setting on two cricketers: Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting," Aldred wrote in her column for the Sydney Morning Herald.
Her comments are very true and touching. It hurts whenever a genius hangs up his boots or pads up for the final time representing his country.
With Ponting saying adieu the focus of cricket aficionados will shift to Sachin Tendulkar now.
Undoubtedly, he is the god of cricket; he has colossal followers who believe in him blindly. But of late his lack of form has triggered a raging debate on whether he shouldn't bow out.
Even the master himself had revealed that he would retire when the time is right; whenever he feels that he is not contributing or not enjoying his game.
The cricketing world is divided over Sachin.
While a section of cricket lovers wants him to retire and pave way for the younger generation to blossom, another section wants him to continue as long as he wants.
Sunil Gavaskar and Kapil Dev, both renowned for their straight-forward talk, said the selectors should have a word with Sachin about his future.
"Selectors should talk to him openly. He is a hero and one feels really bad to see fingers being pointed at him," said Kapil to NDTV.
It's true that Sachin has failed in the last few innings, raising suspicion that age has caught up with the maestro. He isn't the same player who used to enthral his followers with his magic prowess. His getting bowled continuously has ignited a theory that his feet aren't moving and his reflexes have slowed down with age.
Critics have questioned the selectors' motives saying 'they don’t have the guts to drop Sachin.'
With his declining form, many have questioned even his utility in the team. Whatever it is, the repeated Sachin-talk in the media has got everyone to take notice and that has resulted in even greater scrutiny.
Though the selectors have retained him for the third Test, the pressure will be enormous on him to fire on all cylinders.
Another failure will only make the great man's predicament that much greater. (With inputs from agencies)