Sunday, October 13, 2013

Sachin Tendulkar finally decides to put a full stop to his story.

Well finally the question which a few years ago was asked in inaudible whispers, but lately had become completely audible whispers, has been answered. Will he? won't he? When will he? should he? shouldn't he? Where will he? were all being asked.

The game of cricket has always been a game of talent skill and above all temperament. Special talents bordering on the genius come but once in a generation and the cricket crazy nation India was lucky to get one such in the form of a young cherubic boy named Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar,who burst on the scene 24 years back. He had even before starting his international career, been noticed as a prodigy waiting to burst on the scene. Many a talent of this kind has fallen by the wayside and examples of such so called prodigies and the next Bradman's and Gavaskar's have flattered to deceive. The fact that Sachin was able to carry these huge expectations as one of the youngest player ever to have ever played first class and international cricket and do that throughout his 24 year long career put him in bracket above lesser mortals. The numbers are staggering and his records in all formats except T20 are better than all of his contemporaries and better than most cricketers past and present.

The spectacle of Sachin 's batsmanship in his early heyday,. was a sight for the God' s. He dominated bowlers all over the world with superb attacking skills and also ground them with his immaculate defense. His colleagues and opponents almost without exception respected him and put their best effort to get his scalp. A team man and mentor to the younger players, he was a role model for the generations of cricketers who grew with him became players inspired by him.

However, does all this make him the greatest or the God of cricket? I think not for reasons I wish to write even at the cost of displeasing some of my readers. Over such a long career the proportion of match winnings in the finals of important tournaments are few and far between. In fact Sachin seems to get India into the finals but it is the other players with the  better temperament who have won us the major tournaments in Sachin 's career. His slowing down when approaching personal landmarks, sometimes detrimental to the team's interest and failure to perform as a captain remain the flaws in his great career.  Towards the later stage of his career his batting lacked the authority and class of his best times. However being such a great and powerful cricketer, Sachin went through turbulent times in Indian cricket, but never took a public stand or expressed his opinion on the raging controversial issues of the day. The  saddest cut for me is the fact that the BCCI arranged a farewell series for Sachin against convenient opponents rather than a contest against the greatest test side with the fastest bowler of the day. While many may think that I am a bit harsh in judging the man, however the greatest need to excel on every parameter.  Therefore the other big names in cricket also do qualify to greatness  equal or even more than the great Sachin.

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