Why Sachin Tendulkar Greatest ? Sach – Above Cricket
Sachin Tendulkar is a name that is almost synonymous with the game of cricket in India. The master batsman enthralled and bewitched a country of more than 1.2 billion people for almost a quarter of a century. Just think of some of the biggest names in the history of Indian cricket. Wherever you start , the name of Tendulkar will surely figure right at the top.
There have been several big names, several great role models, several icons in the history of Indian cricket, but none like Tendulkar.
If a cricketer manages to play for 10 years, he is great. For, he has been able to perform consistently and has been picked regularly for his side.
If he lasts for 15 years, then he is a legend. For, lasting for such a long period of time will prove that you can adapt to any situation and thrive in varied conditions. All the legends of Indian cricket lasted for a maximum of 17-18 years.
But, Oh My God! Sachin Tendulkar lasted for almost a quarter of a century at the top. Just gulp down these numbers, 463 ODIs, 200 Tests, 18426 ODI runs, 15921 Test runs, 49 ODI hundreds, 51 Test Hundreds, 96 ODI fifties, 68 Test fifties, six World Cups, debut at 16, retirement at 40 and the list goes on….
No Indian cricketer comes even remotely close to these numbers and it is indeed next to impossible for any cricketer to play for such a long period of time with such consistency as Tendulkar did in his unparalleled career.
2. Burden Of Expectations
“When Tendulkar plays well, India sleeps well.” –Harsha Bhogle
Whenever Sachin Tendulkar strode out to bat for India, he bore the expectations of more than 1.2 billion cricket crazy Indians. No Indian cricketer, or for that matter, no cricketer in history has been under more scrutiny than Tendulkar.
A failure from any other player was accepted, but a failure from Tendulkar stung the average cricket fan. Think of the 1999 Test against Pakistan in Chennai. Tendulkar scored 136 out of India’s target of 272, but yet, when India lost, fans viewed it as a personal betrayal from Tendulkar.
Just think of that pin drop which you experience in an Indian stadium when the master got out. Just think of that period from his 99th to 100th hundred. Sachin had scored of 94,91,81,80,76 and 73 during this period. But every time Tendulkar failed to get to the three-figure mark, he was deemed to have failed. Fans were even counting his scored backwards from 100. No Indian cricketer has experienced this before, and it is highly unlikely that any Indian cricketer will experience it again.
3. A Role Model For Generations
Two generations of Indians grew up watching Tendulkar bat. When Tendulkar started out in 1989, Kapil Dev was still at the peak of his powers, Kohli was just a one-year-old toddler, MS Dhoni might have still not touched a cricket bat, the Indian economy had not yet opened up, and the rupee was 17 to a dollar.
And by the time Tendulkar retired in 2013, it had been 19 years since Kapil Dev had hung his boots, MS Dhoni had become India’s greatest captain, Virat Kohli was touted as the next big batting superstar and the rupee was 68 to a dollar.
Kohli, Dhoni, Rohit Sharma, KL Rahul, and many other superstars of the current Indian cricket team grew up watching Tendulkar bat. After all, India has seen eight Prime ministers change from Tendulkar’s first and last Test!
These are some of the reasons why I think Sachin Tendulkar is India’s greatest cricketer. If you have any comments or suggestions, please feel free to do so, in the comments box.
Written By Sai Siddhharth ©SportsKeeda