It sure is a scary thought, but it's inevitable. Most of our favourite cricketers are going to hang their boots one day and we will watch them go with a heavy heart.
Here below we discuss 5 legendary cricketers who could possibly retire after the 2019 ICC World Cup:1. MS Dhoni
A lot has been said about the decision to include Mahendra Singh Dhoni in the Indian squad for the World Cup.
With Rishabh Pant showing his worth both as a batsman and a wicket-keeper during the Border-Gavaskar Test series in Australia, the idea of Dhoni playing in the biggest tournament this year has been challenged by many.
But his performance in the ODI series against the Aussies has cleared all doubts that he's not only still got it but continues to be one of the elite batsmen out there.
The batsman has shown interest in playing the 2019 World Cup ever since he gave up his captaincy. "It's been a long cherished dream of Dhoni - since he gave up the captaincy in white ball cricket - to play in the World Cup next year where he would be more as a mentor to the team,” Dhoni's Manager, Arun Pandey told Gulf News in 2018.
He's had a wonderful career ever since he became a part of Team India. Probably the most loved captain ever, he is also the most accomplished. The best way to say goodbye to the sport for Dhoni would be to play this World Cup, or better yet, win it. A final token of love for the country, one final medal on his wall.2. Chris Gayle
Considered to be on a declining career roller-coaster, this may be Chris Gayle's last big show as an active batsman for the West Indies.
2018 was probably one of the worst years for the big hitter who was absent from the Windies squad for long. Despite that, Windies chief selector, Courtney Browne is certain that Gayle will play a crucial role during the team's World Cup run.
A part of his national team for four World Cups, Gayle is known for his big innings and making unbelievable records including a massive 215 double century against Zimbabwe during the 2015 World Cup
With injuries keeping the former captain away from the pitch for long, the World Cup would be the perfect opportunity for the fans to witness one last 'Gayle Storm'.3. Ross Taylor
Making his ODI debut all the way back in 2006, this Kiwi is still playing like a 20-year-old fresher with strong legs and back to support his game.
In what has turned out to be a great 2018 for the former New Zealand captain, Taylor scored 639 runs in just 11 ODIs which included two centuries and four half-centuries.
"It's a World Cup year, and I've put a big focus on the tournament and on one-day cricket," Taylor said in a post-match press event after the second one-day international against Sri Lanka on Saturday, 5 January. "There are still a few things I want to work on, but I can hopefully continue the form over the summer."
Despite the recent run of success Taylor is enjoying, his inconsistency along with his age are hinting his separation from the game. Under the leadership of Kane Williamson and Taylor, New Zealand are looking like real title contenders.4. Dale Steyn
The South African pacer was last seen playing in the 50 over format all the way back in 2016 when they were hosting Australia for a five-game series which the Proteas won with a 5-0 clean sweep.
"It's so bloody long ago I can't even remember it," Dale Steyn said in an interview with ICC. "What I do remember is that we won 5-0. And it's a team game. And that's all that matters."
Since then, Steyn, who's distanced himself from ODIs, has often shown interest in participating in the 2019 World Cup and has also mentioned how he wants his country to lift the championship a lot more.
Finding his fitness once more, the bowler played a big role in the Hampshire County Cricket Club England and Wales' domestic first-class cricket circuit and can capitalise it on it during the World Cup in June.5. Hashim Amla
Known for his quiet demeanour and a strong presence on the pitch, South African cricketer and Dale Steyn's former teammate, Hashim Amla as a performer, is deteriorating with every single day.
Once a proud opener for the Proteas with a powerful and prestigious career of his glory days behind him, the 36-year-old is currently struggling with his pace in all formats of the game.
Although the team has other options should Amla not get his touch back, there is still a lot of time for 'the mighty Hash' to get there. What is probably a bit more worrying is his bad luck dealing with injuries.
If this is going to be Amla's big exit from the cricketing world, he will most certainly try his best to perform with how much ever fuel he has left in his tank.