Sunday, March 18, 2012


100th 100

People do get sick…,do get old…,do become weak…,do become incapable of doing what they did effortlessly a few years ago…,and then …,they do fade out.
It happens to everybody. Many thought much the same thing – when  Sachin failed to get his hundredth hundred – for over a year.

Even Sachin must get older; lose concentration; fail (to play) consistently; and disappoint us consistently for over a year.. It was happening every time he batted during last one year or so. 

Yet, we (I) waited…,and waited…,and waited…some of his ardent supporters (many, including me) were not losing patience….but some were losing patience…

Many of the impatient men..the media men, the critics…all the off-field, arm-chair experts…, had started criticizing the Cricketing God…, stressing that older cricketers must fade out into cricketing oblivion – and probably, become enlightened bureaucrats, like K.Srikkanth…,or Sunil Gavaskar. Give chance to younger their advice…, their argument. 

K.Srikkanth was himself drawing flak (as selector) on why he was not demanding strictly for the 100th 100 from the little master. Tell him to – Get the hundred or get out. Something like that.

We must all be a little more understanding than that. After all, we can’t get another Sachin, to hit a century of centuries, in a century (of years).  It is now or never. This one Sachin or none else.

After 99 100s,  another small hundred will need to wait for its time. Sachin usually takes some time scoring that one run after scoring 99 quick runs to reach his ton. In same manner, he took quite some time, to take his 100th century - after his 99th ton. 

If we knew that - it had to be against Bangladesh, we would have invited Bangladesh or gone to Bangladesh long ago – instead of wasting time on England, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, South Africa etc. Bangladesh, any way is improving its cricket very well and is an increasingly unpredictable side. Congrats, B’desh for your win - especially after Sachin’s Century.

Had this happened an year ago - with the pressure off his mind, the little master would have again assumed the role of a master Blaster, and hit the Aussies and all others to the covers all through one year. The Maha’ Government would have pressured GOI for a Bharat Ratna for the Great son of M’Rashtra, who claims to be first an Indian and then, anything else. 

I like him much more - for this one statement, than for his 100 100s – because, not one in a hundred (or in a 100 100s) seem to feel so in India now a days. Youngsters (and not so youngsters) in India must all learn this one idea (or ideal) from Sachin and live by it. The country needs it - more than Cricket.

If that happens, Sachin will deserve B’Ratna too – but not for his 100 100s in Cricket. If a 100 patriots say  – be Indian ,Buy Indian (etc) – our Youngsters are in no great mood to listen. But, if Sachin of the 100 100s Fame, the cricketing God of our times, says that- our youngsters will surely listen.

Indian public mind – that is, our mind- is very peculiar. If MS Dhoni hits a 50 we are satisfied. We go into raptures (for a while). But, If Sachin hits 60  –we are dissatisfied. We condemn him. 100 is his Pass Mark. We are all unjust, cruel , biased, one-eyed monsters. We want a hundred from Sachin. Always. 

Otherwise – We may even throw stones at him – like some people sometimes do in Pakistan against Pros(Prostitutes) and we may cry for his blood. Give us a hundred or RETIRE!

This was the battle cry in some sections of media, on the streets, on the internet and all over the world – where the name of cricket is known, or at least, the name of Sachin is known.

Why is he not retiring, if he can’t even hit a hundred – many were asking impatiently. Don’t you have the guts to retire him – some openly asked the selectors. Yet others wonder openly – why are the older players like Sachin not retiring, making way, for younger players?

Some one else, other than Sachin, would have fretted, fumed, and retired in a huff, when such things happen. But, Sachin did have strong protagonists who fought the battles on his behalf, from his side. 

Show us some from amongst youngsters, who has done better than Sachin, even in 2011? Was he at the bottom of the scoreboard – or in the averages in 2011? If so, fine, retire him; fire him; but, if he is still among the top  5 even in 2011 – how can you retire him?

Locate the worst performers in the team – and FIRE THEM! Not one of the best performers, simply because, he is older than the worst performers. Admittedly, 2011 was virtually a washout for Indian cricket. Our cricketers FAILED INEXPLICABLY, but consistently. It was a Grand Team failure – with no one really shining. In Batting, bowling and fielding – we failed.  

Our bowling proved its weakness conclusively in 2011. It is proving to be so even in 2012 – as we saw against Bangladesh in which we lost - even after a marvelous century by Sachin.  We have just won a marvelous match today against Pakistan – by exceptional batting from Virat Kohli (183 –his 11th ODI ton) , Rohit Sharma(68) and of course, Sachin (52). So,2012 can prove to be a turn around.

After the disaster against Bangladesh – who can say that Sachin should now be fired and the rest of the team retained????

In India most people are emotional, some are philosophical, but very few are scientific – in temperament.

When a team wins 4 matches in a row – we retain the winning team for the next series, or for the next year and so on – including all the duds in the winning team. When we win, we get intoxicated – and then, even the desert looks green. It happens to many teams perhaps – and we are not an exception. But, when we lose – everyone looks a dud.

We  search for those youngsters who are talented –  we encourage them when they do well – we drop them all of a sudden even after they do well – and then, bring then back when they are emotionally down – and drop them if they don’t do well..and it goes on in quirky steps. The Yuvraj Singh Ad says it all. 

Will Sachin hit another hundred Centuries? Well. Mr.Yogendra Yadav can put this to vote and find the result – which we all, already know.

But, Sachin can convert many Indians to the much needed nationalistic philosophy of “I am an Indian first”. When Sachin Bats on field with this LOGO ON -  He can perhaps convert a 100 100 100 Indians into saying and feeling this intensely.

It doesn’t matter how many hundreds and half-hundreds or even half-of half hundreds he hits – but, he must play on for a long time to come to do this – and get his Bharat Ratna – just for this one service. Not for a 100 100s with Bat and Ball – which deserves a New, highest SPORTS HONOUR / AWARD.

But, if he does get B’Ratna, I will still congratulate him. It is just that – I want GOI to search for people  WHO ARE DOING EXCEPTIONAL SELF LESS SERVICE for India, and there are a few who are doing that – and honour them with B’Ratna. 

To draw  a comparison – Bill gates deserves no (B’Ratna like) awards for creating his Microsoft and becoming Number one billionaire in the world. But, he certainly deserves such an award for giving up more than 1/3rd (so far) of his wealth for saving the lives of millions of suffering people.

I love a few quotes on Sachin – and these are here :

·         A placard at the SCG: Commit all your crimes when Sachin is batting. They will go unnoticed because even the Lord is watching.

·         Peter Roebuck: On a train from Shimla to Delhi, there was a halt in one of the stations. The train stopped by for few minutes as usual. Sachin was nearing century, batting on 98. The passengers, railway officials, everyone on the train waited for Sachin to complete the century. This Genius can stop time in India!!

·         Barry Richards : Sachin is cricket’s God

·         Hashim Amla (South African batsman) : Nothing bad can happen to us if we’are on a plane in India with Sachin Tendulkar on it.

·         Mark Taylor : We did not lose to a team called India…we lost to a man called Sachin – (in Test match at Chennai 1997)

·         Harsha Bhogle : If sachin plays well…India sleeps well.

·         Kris Srikkanth : He is the only match winning batsman we have

·         Ranatunga : You get him out  and half the battle is won

·         Sachin Tendulkar : I want to give my six hours of serious cricket on the ground and then take whatever the result.

·         “To Sachin, the man we all want to be” - - What Andrew Symonds wrote on an aussie t-shirt he autographed specially for Sachin

·         “The joy he brings to the millions of his countrymen, the grace with which he handles all the adulation and the expectations and his innate humility -all make for a one-in-a-billion  - individual” - -Glenn McGrath

·         “Even my father’s name is Sachin Tendulkar.” -  -Tendulkar’s daughter, Sara, tells her class her father’s name after the teacher informs them of a restaurant of the same name in Mumbai.

·         Question: Who do you think as most important celebrity ?
Shahrukh: There was a big party where stars from bollywood and cricket were invited. Suddenly, there was a big noise, all wanted to see approaching Amitabh Bachhan.  Then Sachin entered the hall and Amitabh was leading the queue to get a grab of the GENIUS!! 
-A quote of Shahrukh Khan from one of his interviews

·         “I WILL SEE GOD WHEN I DIE BUT TILL THEN I WILL SEE SACHIN “ - -Displayed on a banner at a cricket ground

·         “Sachin cannot cheat. He is to cricket what (Mahatma) Gandhiji was to politics. It’s clear discrimination.” - -NKP Salve, former Union Minister. This was when he was accused of ball tempering.

·    “There are 2 kind of batsmen in the world. One Sachin Tendulkar. Two all the others.”-Andy Flower

·         I have delayed my shoots many times to watch Sachin bat" - Filmstar Amitabh Bachchan.

·         "I don't watch cricket much but I admire Sachin Tendulkar. I like the way he has conducted himself over the years. He has been such a huge star for so long but has not had a single controversy against his name." - Olympic bronze medallist boxer Vijender Singh.

·         "The best thing about Sachin Tendulkar is that he's completely rooted, down to earth, and a thorough gentleman. He's probably the best thing to have happened to Indian cricket and maybe Indian sport as a whole." - Indian tennis star Sania Mirza.

·         Sachin is 99.5% Perfect.. I'll pay to watch him play. - Viv Richards

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1 comment:

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