The day started at 6.45 am as I struggled out of bed. With no good news coming from the stock markets I turned my attention to cricket as the second test match was about to begin. The best thing that happened today morning was that on a ‘patta’ of a pitch MSD won the toss and elected to bat.
The start by Sehwag & Gambhir was fast and furious but too good to last long. Eventually Sehwag got out and would probably have been kicking himself in the dressing room for missing out on such a flat track. The track was so good for batting no one would like to get out early. Especially after getting to 30, but he was not alone as Rahul gave him company getting out in the 30’s too. Gambhir got a 60 odd but again gave his wicket away at the wrong time to almost give the Aussies a sniff of bowling India out. Laxman followed tickling a innocuous delivery on the leg side to be taken by the keeper.
The moment was here, the master short of a few runs of Brian Lara’s record. Our entire country which is statistics crazy and mad about records was at the tenterhooks, me included. I usually don’t like these records, I would rather see all world records not come our way but all the victories instead. However for this moment I thought it was fitting that Sachin Tendulkar reach this peak which he thoroughly deserved to reach.
Here is the most loved Indian, he has just gone past Brian Lara and is now the highest run getter in both Test Cricket and One day Cricket. Truly there is no one more deserving than him. The joy he brings to us Indians is immeasurable.
The sensex had gone below 10000 for the first time since 2006 but who cared. For the moment Sachin had made me forget every thing. All I wanted to do was catch as much as I could of the highlights and I was enjoying to see that all the news media doing a U-turn since they wanted these champions to retire and today two of them just scored good runs to get India out of trouble.
The man is hurting, like the other four. Like Kumble lashed out, Sachin also had his version, “In such a long journey of 19years there are some stones thrown at you, it is your job to convert them into milestones.”
I was so bitter with the media, if I were in his place I wouldn’t give any interviews to any channel today. But the humbleness of the man after a fighting days test cricket still willing to give out the interviews was evident.
As the series keeps progressing, more and more media people and critics will be made to eat their words. You criticize champions at your own peril, as they can lay low for a while but will always bounce back.
Well coming back to Sachin, it was great to see his first interview done by Tom Alter at the age of 15. NDTV had managed to get Tom Alter to speak about his interview and really when you saw the 15 year old say that he likes fast bowling because the ball comes straight to the bat really warmed my heart.
Even as I write this he brings tears of joys in my eyes. The man who started his career in Pakistan as a 16 year old has come a long way. The man always showed he was special. The first time he batted he had a nose broken and blood on his shirt against the arch rival Pakistan as Waqar Younis bounced him. But the grit of this young kid at 16 was evident when he told Sidhu, who was asking him if he wanted to go off the field and get treatment, ‘ paaji mein khelenga.’
Kya khela Sachin… You have given us hope at times of despair. You made us forget our woes and taught us to smile. You gave nightmares to the Shane Warne who has been selected as the bowler of the century. The amount of joy that Sachin has given us Indians is immeasurable, you are truly deserving of all the accolades you are getting and probably they aren’t enough. There aren’t enough adjectives to describe this man.
However the celebrations need to hold back a little. We have a job at hand, we have to score over 450 runs, and hope to bowl well. However the pitch is so flat I doubt if we can also bowl the opposition out cheaply. Time will tell though.
We bow today to Sachin, the cricket god. This is a new beginning for him, if you know the man he will go from strength to strength from here on. There are many more victories to be won, many more runs to be scored, many more bowlers to be penalized, many more joys to bring to us and most of all many more days where you keep on playing cricket as we know that is the one thing that you love the most. Like the movie titles of remakes… This is SACHIN RETURNS……