Hail Tendulkar!

Amidst all the mediocrity in behavior surrounding him, the great man did what only he can. He played a masterly knock to further deepen the crevices in an increasingly ordinary looking Australian side. In doing so, he silenced his critics for the umpteenth in his career, all this nonsense about his “second innings” weakness. What an innings it was, sheer artistry combined with focus and determination, abundunce in intelligence and all that, reminding me a lot of music concerts of our very own Sanjay Subrahmanyan.

What was even more glorious to watch was his interaction with supposedly his protege, Rohit Sharma. No one can deny the fact that Rohit Sharma played a gem of an innings, something he could probably have done so only in the presence of the master himself. Sharma did return the favor by running for life when Tendulkar was nearing his hundred doing everything he possibly could to ensure that the maestro walk away from Australia this time with atleast a one day hundred on its soil.

It was interesting to hear how the Aussie commentators, at the start of the innings, constantly referred to the fact that India’s winning chances depended entirely on Tendulkar stay the course in a vein that sounded like a subliminal prayer for his dismissal. Their words certainly came true while their hearts may have grieved.

Back to the man and the innings, you could sense from the word go that he was going to glue himself to the wicket and the sticky conditions come what may and see India start on a winning note in this finale. Nothing would deter him, not even the deliberate (did I say deliberate, oops it was a slip!  Who knows where the truth lies.) attempt on his ribs by one Mr. Lee (it is starting to get a little to irritatingly frequent from this bowler). A smile, a pat on the back and a tame apology after an ugly episode such as this is a poor man’s version of a sore loser. Unlike other sore losers, the high road seeking genius put an immediate end to any speculation of deliberate cause by accepting the apology even if it came from Lee.

My wife, who does not watch much cricket these days, had this say about the Aussie behavior of late, “Mr. Bradman would be turning in his grave”. The Australian team under Ricky Ponting may have played great cricket most of the time but have thrown away every inch of the respect that they earned over the years. All the glory years brought to its lowest and dirtiest state by one man in a jiffy. Steve Waugh’s Australia looks angelic in comparison. India’s gutsy performance through the series aided by the occasional wins by Sri Lanka has brought the true shady colors of Mr. Ponting and his crew.

 Amidst all this, one little man stands tall. Thank you, Sir Tendulkar!!

– Srikanth

8 responses to “Hail Tendulkar!

  1. @Srikanth,

    Well written post, Spot on, Sir Srikanth !!!!!!

  2. For all the educated fair-minded Aussies out there (I know there may not be many, but there’s always hope, right)

    Pls stop focusing on Bhajji for a few minutes and look at the Stats for the CB Series so far:

    1. Among the top 5 run-scorers, 3 are Indian, 1 is Srilankan and only 1 Aussie (Gilchrist)

    2. Among the top 5 bowlers, 3 are Aussies and only 1 each from India and Sri Lanka.

    3. Among the wicket-keepers, Gilchrist and Dhoni are tied with 18 dismissals each although Dhoni has a better average having played 1 match less.

    4. Among the fielders, only 1 in the top 5 catchers (Hussey) and 2 each from India and Sri Lanka.

    Now come on, there are clearly some problems with the Aussie team, which they need to work on. So far, it’s your bowlers and Gilly carrying you to the finals. High time others began contributing as well…

  3. I was reminded of “Amadeus” while watching Sachin yesterday.We are fortunate to be in same era as him, same feeling maybe felt by Bradman’s generation.
    As for Ponting, I have somehow never felt convinced on his greatness on captaincy.He has been lucky to be backed a great cricket establishment and to have exceptional cricketers like mcgrath,warne,gilchrist and brett lee in his team.The challenges in leading a self-motivated and talented team are lesser than leading a average team.Which is why I think Mahela is much better captain than Ponting.
    Also the unfriendly behaviour in the team seems to start from the captain himself very unlike his predecessors like Waugh,Taylor or Border.

  4. Tendulkar did seem totally different from what we have seen over the last 3 months. There was a glimpse of the old Tendulkar during the test matches, but this innings will rate as one of his better ones.

    We have another final coming up tomorrow and let us look forward to another gem from the diamond that Sachin is.

  5. Why do we keep hankering for the “Tendulkar of Old”? None of us are the “Us of Old” are we? Let us enjoy Tendulkar of today for otherwise, tomorrow, we will yearn for Teldulkar of yesterday!

  6. Srikanth Mangalam

    Bang on Mohan! In fact, “Tendulkar of Old” sounds disrespectful of “Tendulkar of the present”. I think you had once said something to the effect of Tendulkar having evolved over time into greater things, some of us continue to remain in the past. As a result, we fail to fully recognize and appreciate his greatness. He is always several steps ahead. On a personal note, Mohan, doesn’t that remind you of our dear friend!!!

  7. It’s a pity you had to slip in the sly dig about Lee.

    You clearly lack the class of Tendulkar.

    A quick check of the stats shows two beamers in 8529 ODI deliveries or about 0.023%. Whilst two is two too many it is hardly of irritating frequency.

    What was was comment about SreSanth beamer to Pieterson (again a pity the batsmen didn’t show the same class as ST)? Lee’s apology was far more than SreeSanths casual wave of an arm & turn back to his mark
    At least Lee had the excuse of night dew.

    Why not glory in a wonderful innings that we were all privilged to see rather than reveal your petty & mean spirit

  8. @Pav — we enjoyed the lovely treat by the master Blaster, but we were also a little bothered about his security. 🙂

    Did you watch Gavaskars’ comments about Lee incident in Star Sports you better watch it, where the crew is trying to analyse the Lee episode a little scientifically..

    Slater – An OZ — agrees that this has been happening too often with Lee than any other fast bowler.

    If not a cruel intention, this slip should at least be attributed to some technical flaw in the bowling, and needs to be corrected. Otherwise Boards will have to pay more premium to the Insurance companies if they feel that their batsmen are likely to face lee quite often 🙂

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