My earliest memories of cricket include a curly haired lad who dad repeatedly called a genius “ooh-ing” and “aah-ing” at his masterful play and discussing his game for hours later. He is a genius, an icon for Indian cricket. Nothing unites a country more than cricket and no-one does it better than Sachin Tendulkar. For twenty long years, he has played despite his injuries, his barren-patches, his unsuccesful stint at captaincy and yet we love no one better than him. I used to turn off the TV once he was dismissed and despite having a rather poor memory for cricket statistics, his runs,knocks and images from his matches remain ingrained in my head. He is my first sporting icon, a man who continues to enthrall me and his love for the game is truly inspiring. Over the years, as I grew to understand the world and the game, I realize how truly great and humble a man he is. Roger Federer is at his own place, but Sachin will always remain notches higher. He is the benchmark for how great a cricketer can be and how one man can unite a nation sans differences.
His statistics and figures are mindboggling and his arsenal of shots decimates the bowling when he uses it.He might have the highest figures in everything, but scoring a 200 run knock in a one-day international which is the favourite format of the average Indian (no, I still dont agree that 20-20 has had that effect yet) is something very very special. Everyone, people who never watched cricket, avid cricket lovers and perhaps just everybody watched him today. He is truly special, an icon whose achievements will never be surpassed for a long long time to come.
I’m just lucky I was born in the era when he played cricket.
Sachin Tendulkar, you are God. We salute you. You introduced me to cricket all those years ago, and today, you brought it back into my life.