Another debate surrounding Indian cricket that did rounds in the television that plays in my bedroom every night was if Sachin Tendulkar was good enough to remain in Indian cricket team or not.
To be honest, I have admired Sachin Tendulkar ever since he debuted as Indian batsman at the age of 16. Since then I have celebrated his each of his 37 ODI centuries. I have basked in the glory of each triumph that Sachin’s performance has brought to Indian cricket team. I will gladly observe any superstition if it promises a century from Sachin. Such is my fervor for him. The feeling is same for the rest of billion Indians. Each of them looks up at Sachin with huge expectations and hopes.
It is certainly difficult to go out on cricketing crease in Sachin’s place, for each time more than billion hopes will be resting on your shoulders alone. If I were Sachin, my shoulders would be stooping with stress and pressure in no time. (Though they already do. 🙂 )
Statistics and unsurpassed records speak a lot about Sachin’s talent. However, this truth can not be ruled out that since his back problems, 33-year-old Sachin Tendulkar’s batting performances have not been consistent and exemplary. There is nothing ill and unnatural about it, considering even the best known technology and gadgets have failed at one point or other. Sachin is, after all, a human. So the debate, should he quit after all?
It all started with Imran Khan saying in an interview that Indians think Sachin to be as good as Sir Vivian Richards, which he is not. Sachin has never been a consistent match winner as Richards. Then came Ian Chappel, who is former Australian cricket captain and brother of our own ‘foreign’ coach, who said that Sachin is trying to ‘eke out a career out of past records.’ This was not only uncharitable, but also surprising considering this same guy had expressed faith in Sachin in a television interview to a new channel, perhaps CNN IBN before the onset of World Cup.
I am glad when contemporaries like Brian Lara and Glenn McGrath came out publicly in Sachin’s support. I agree with McGrath when he says that players like Lara and Tendulakar are class apart. They are the best person to decide when they should quit.
Perhaps Lara will quit ODI’s after the loss of his country in World Cup yesterday. So the host team is out of the tournament.
As for Sachin, stop causing unnecessary furor over his performance. A player of Sachin’s statur, who has contributed to the Indian cricket for 17 years, deserves a graceful exit. He is the one who should decide how long he should play. Not the so-called experts or critics nor cricket-crazy Indian fans.