VVS Laxman India
VVS Laxman made batting into an artReuters

The nightmare of the Australians, the man for a crisis, the right-hander who makes elegant left-handers look like No.11 batsmen – VVS Laxman was that and more. The India batting legend turned 42 on Tuesday and Twitter was awash with birthday wishes for the great man.

Known for his ridiculous wrists and that 281 in Kolkata, Laxman was a part of the "Fab 4" – Fab 5 really, because Virender Sehwag also should be there -- of the golden era of Indian batting, when the Hyderabadi, along with Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly, dominated the bowlers and broke several records.

Always the man to look up to when India needed a batsman to stand up and be counted, Laxman made a habit of rescuing his team when they were in a crisis.

He made batting with the tail-enders into an art, and while he will always be remembered for arguably the greatest ever Test match innings of the modern era, Laxman is someone who deserves to be right up there with the Sachins and Dravids, even if his numbers might not suggest that.

In a career of 134 Test matches and 86 ODIs – he never really fulfilled his potential in limited-overs cricket -- Laxman beat up the Australian bowlers to a pulp. In Tests he ended up with a total of 8781 runs at an average of 45.97, with most of his 17 centuries, of course, coming against the Aussies.

Proving how popular a player and teammate he was, a ton of former cricketers took to Twitter to wish the man from Hyderabad a very happy birthday.