Sachin Tendulkar — A name which will be sung in the cricket history books for an eternity.
Sachin is arguably one of the best if not the best player India has ever produced. His glorious straight drives and phenomenal temperament is still alive in the minds and hearts of the cricket fans.
His image may appear to be a Godly one. However, Sachin is just a man and in his latest interview, he admitted it himself and said that he was going to quit cricket after his first-ever Test match innings against Pakistan.
So what brought on such a change of heart for someone who lived only for cricket? Well, the answer to that is the fierce 2 Ws – Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis.
Appearing on a show called Breakfast with Champions, Sachin said:
First innings of my life, in Karachi, I thought it would be my first and last innings. In the first match, I had no idea. Waqar (Younis) bowling from one end, Wasim (Akram) going full-throttle from the other. And they had just started reverse-ball. To go there and play suddenly, I was completely out of place.
Following an abysmal display, Tendulkar was rescued by his teammates who persuaded him not to lose faith in himself after just one international Test innings. His teammates, including some staff members, asked Sachin to give things more time.
I took advice from everyone in the dressing room and they told me to spend some more time on it. ‘This is international cricket. You’re playing possibly the best bowling attack in the world. Give them that respect.
The pressure of facing Wasim and Waqar at their peak was more than enough to terrorize any batsman. To face the duo on home soil? That is even more lethal. The two W’s swung the ball both ways and then made great use of reverse swing to break Tendulkar’s spirits.
However, the Master Blaster came back in the 2nd innings, where he scored a half-century which reinstated his belief in himself. He then went on to score a total of 100 centuries in international cricket.
Second innings of my life, I scored 59 runs. I got back to the dressing room and looked at myself and said, ‘you have done it’.
The Pak-Ind cricketers have always shown immense mutual respect for each other and that is because of the sheer talent both countries share. This is another one of those examples.