Sri Lanka v India, Compaq Cup final, Colombo

The old rush

Sachin Tendulkar's 134 in Sharjah in 1998 set the bar for his centuries in a one-day final, but damned if today's effort doesn't at least nip at its skirts

Jamie Alter at the Premadasa Stadium

September 14, 2009

Comments: 58 | Text size: A | A

Sachin Tendulkar whips it on the leg side, Sri Lanka v India, Compaq Cup, final, Colombo, September 14, 2009
It was a gem of an innings that harked back to the Sachin Tendulkar of yore © AFP
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Sachin Tendulkar's 134 in Sharjah in 1998 set the bar for his centuries in one-day finals, but damned if today's effort doesn't at least nip at its skirts. The biggest performers - and few come any bigger than Tendulkar - invariably deliver on the big occasion and today, with India looking to snap a run of five straight completed finals defeats to Sri Lanka, Tendulkar dazzled. When Tendulkar bats like he did today, he is as irresistible as he is artistic, and you can only sit back and enjoy it.

He had got starts in the previous two games, but India's decision to send Dinesh Karthik to open meant Tendulkar was under pressure from ball one. When Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid walked out today, there was a tinge of the 1990s solidity. As it panned out, the innings that followed harked back to the Tendulkar of yore. Dravid, for long India's most technically sound batsman, allowed Tendulkar to play his game. They did their job efficiently, taking the shine off the new ball, wearing down the quick bowlers, denying Ajantha Mendis a wicket, and paving the way for the batsmen to follow.

From the first ball Tendulkar faced, when he stood tall and punched Thilan Thushara wide of mid-off, he oozed confidence. Batting wasn't too difficult in the first ten overs against a tidy bowling attack on a flat track, but he was intent on sticking around. This wasn't the kind of pitch to chase the ball and apart from one delivery that he flashed at and edged for four, Tendulkar was patient. A couple of deliveries beat the outside edge; he bided his time and then pushed Nuwan Kulasekara superbly through the covers for four. It helped that the opening bowlers didn't pitch the ball up enough, and when Kulasekara did, Tendulkar drove past extra cover and clipped past midwicket.

Between overs, Tendulkar twirled his left arm and tapped the track. These were the moments needed to gather his thoughts. Significantly, he drew on all his experience to upset the bowlers, especially when they tried something different. Thilan Thushara veered his line to just outside off stump, and Tendulkar forced the ball through the off side for four. Lasith Malinga bowled a couple of testing deliveries, but when he held back the length marginally, Tendulkar glided back and forced the ball through the covers. Tendulkar judged the line flawlessly and was lissome with his footwork as he turned length deliveries away at precisely the right moment. His cover and square-driving were of the highest quality: the balance was perfect, the weight transfer faultless and the ball seldom hit in the air.

On a surface where other batsmen often failed to work the ball off the square, Tendulkar's fluency was astounding. He struck the ball with grace, either when going back or working it across the line. Deliveries pitched on a length were turned through midwicket and square leg, others back of a length were crisply steered between cover and point.

As the ball got old in the middle overs, Tendulkar and MS Dhoni found the gaps and rotated the strike. Dhoni complemented Tendulkar beautifully, and the two denied Sri Lanka any wriggle room. On 87, Tendulkar waltzed out and drove Mendis over extra cover for four. A punch off Mendis past mid-off took him to 99, and a single pinched through cover took Tendulkar to three figures for the 44th time. A raise of the arms, a wave of the bat to the dressing room, a lingering look at the heavens and a hug from Dhoni followed, and then he marked his guard again.

Dhoni tried to up the tempo in the batting Powerplay and fell for 56. Here Tendulkar's batting shifted down a gear as he batted with cramps, using Dravid as a runner, but he was no less determined. His strike-rate slowed down as he worked the ball around to get Yuvraj Singh on strike, yet the shot selection was impeccable. Seemingly invigorated by not having to run, Tendulkar launched an onslaught against Mendis in the 45th over, when in three successive deliveries he smote a six over extra cover - the high elbow said much about the strength needed to execute the shot - and reverse-swept fours. He fell attempting another, but his work allowed Yuvraj to smack a belligerent half-century that helped India set an unachievable target at this venue under lights, despite Thilina Kandamby's bravado.

The last time India played a final here it appeared they had forgotten how to play like a half-decent team. Today they took a massive step toward, freeing themselves from a spectre that had haunted them for too long. In Tendulkar - who has now scored nine international centuries and seven 90s since May 2007 - India have a batsman showing no signs of slowing down. With the Champions Trophy next week and the World Cup in 2011, this becomes especially relevant.

Jamie Alter is a senior sub-editor at Cricinfo

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Posted by Shobhit308 on (September 16, 2009, 16:59 GMT)

I have grown up watching Sachin play and am one of his biggest fans( though would take the liberty of qualifying myself as a 'rational 'one). For all the million great things he has done, his primary failing has been the fact that he has let himself get bogged down by situations & expectations. Once he became the mainstay of Indian batting - post the initial 3-4 years of his career, he started taking the line 'all on me' a bit too seriously...the absence of any consistent fallback player contributed to the same - this refers to the period between Azharruddin ( who was scratchy in his last few years) and the prominence of Ganguly,Dravid,Laxman. I think this induced 'self-reliance' coupled with his hyper attachment to the cause ( to India's winning) explains some of his failings in crunch situations as well as a not too good record as a captain. The antithesis of Sachin is Sehwag's 'situation-free' approach. No one is perfect but lets admire a gem who has given us so much joy. Cheers

Posted by NKSUDHIR on (September 16, 2009, 15:32 GMT)

Thanks for a brilliant article for a brilliant MASTER BLASTER. There are not enough words to praise Sachin's excellence and class!!! As many of his fans said, we are just lucky to watch Sachin play in this era. Lots of Best Wishes for Sachin for Champoin's Trophy!!! And for some jealous Cricket Watchers: Sachin is a Run Machine, Fun Machine and Winning Machine, All In One!!! Great Going Sachin!!!

Posted by Sreerang on (September 16, 2009, 14:39 GMT)

Ya Jeet, just go back a year & more to Australia - The commonwealth Finals -best of 3 against Australia- India won because of excellent starts by Tendulkar. In the 1st final while chasing, Sachin scored 117 not out and 2nd final batting first he scored 91. But am sure the likes of you are never convinced!

Posted by maninblue09 on (September 16, 2009, 14:20 GMT)

I think one (@ ratedstfu44) should get their fact rechecked before pointing finger at Sachin. For the fact He has 59 MOM in 428 matches against Ponting's 29/317 and Lara's 30/299 and he also has 14 MOS against Ponting's 5 and Lara's 4, nothing to compare .. nothing to prove. Moerever we love him not because he's got all these records, but because of his batting class gives us real pleasure of cricket batting, his actions in the cricket filed have been unquestionable... We are just fortunate to see him in our era.

Posted by rishabh.raj09 on (September 16, 2009, 14:12 GMT)

hello everyone..first of all many congratulations to my idol and the "GOD OF CRICKET" for such a beautiful innings..he is indeed the best batsmen to have played in any era for me by far..and now commenting on some baseless comments frm jeet19800 and ratedstfu44..i am very sorry that they dont knw the game properly and dont follow it..the century which he scored in VB series final against australia was under lights and batting second as well..i hope u do remember..and i am not going too far to look for such an instance..then there is sharjah..2 instances in a row..and as far as pointing's knock is concerned..he scored century in ODI's after 18 months..and sachin has scored 7 centurys in past 18 months..thats just explains the amount of consistency this great player has in both form of games..which i am afraid no one can even try to match..Just dnt be jealous of his achievements and look for abnormalities in his performance..we r proud of such a gr8 batsmen..all hail "MASTER BLASTER"

Posted by Rohan1 on (September 16, 2009, 13:56 GMT)

A very good article on cricinfo right now :"TENDULKARS FINAL ONSLAUGHT"...clearly shows why as Warney said it's "Tendulkar first , daylight second , and then the rest" !!!

Posted by SatyajitM on (September 16, 2009, 10:44 GMT)

That is right ratedstfu44! Sachin plays only for himself. That's why he got only 8 MOM in 38 finals @55.5. Lara the match winner has a grand average of 28 in ODI finals (not sure if he got any MOM in ODI finals). Also, Sachin never played well chasing under pressure (you see WC03 match against Pakistan chasing 274 was a highly low pressure game).

Posted by SatyajitM on (September 16, 2009, 10:08 GMT)

Interesting comment from jeet19800, who "loves Tendulkar as much as as any indian do" :-) But couldn't see much good in the 138 scored by Sachin. So what it was played in a final.Hoever, Ponting's innings was excellent (I don't doubt that myself) which was played under tremendous pressure Australia being 4-0 up and already won the bialateral tournament ;-)

Posted by SatyajitM on (September 16, 2009, 9:59 GMT)

Interesting comment from jeet19800, who "loves Tendulkar as much as as any indian do" :-) But couldn't see much good in the 138 scored by Sachin. So what it was played in a final.Hoever, Ponting's innings was excellent (I don't doubt that myself) which was played under tremendous pressure Australia being 4-0 up and already won the bialateral tournament ;-)

Posted by kamal-perera on (September 16, 2009, 9:52 GMT)

sachin is always a good player and he played superbly in the final match.sri lankan umpire ashoka de silva refused a lbw shout of yuvraj singh when he was in 2 or something near(bowling of ajantha mendis).there wasn't any clear reason to refuse that.that's make a big difference in the match and he has got quick 56 runs.if umpire got the correct decision sri lanka could have won the match.but sri lanka never lost like indians.just from 46 runs.india slip down to no3 spot from no1 spot within 24 is a good achievement of sri lanka.

Posted by Notout_Naveen on (September 16, 2009, 8:45 GMT)

@jeet19800..dude for ur information in cb series final against aus sachin scored a century while chasing..and in the very next final Aus was chasing u check the score card how much did ponting score!! Its ok if u compare both of these in numbers..but not in class..sachin is way ahead of ponting..ponting can only dream some of the shots sachin plays..cover drives on the up both front foot and backfoot.. those delicate flicks..Sachin is the real master in playing those strokes with such audicity and balance.. I can only laugh at ur comments when u said ponting century against medicore english attack on a match of no importance was better than sachins century in finals against formidable lankan attack.

Posted by ratedstfu44 on (September 16, 2009, 8:43 GMT)

Look look look sachin is a run machine not match winner lyk lara/ponting. He can score only batting 1st. Did any1 saw him playing gud under pressure or under light or chasing a big total.

2 days before final india scored only 160+ under lights. But srilanka scored 270+ or almost won the match. So, toss is x-factor of india's win nothing else. If india were chasing 300+ at final im sure they would nt get more than 150.

Posted by Hotshot007 on (September 16, 2009, 8:26 GMT)

@Jeet19800 The english attack lacked the sting needed. Plus their fielding was horrible. This made Ponting's task all the more easy. In contrast, Sachin played against a highly disciplined SL attack, who stuck to their line & length for most part of the inital overs. It is to Sachin's credit that he batted as well as he did.

As for the Sachin failing under chase, u seem to have some memory loss, recall the 1st CB series final where sachin cracked a brialliant hundred to lead India to a famous win? How is it that you people seem to be blind to such stats?

Posted by Easwar76 on (September 16, 2009, 6:44 GMT)

I think in CT Gambhir will return to the team india will be the more settled XI. Because gambhir and sachin open the innings and followed by dravid, yuvi, raina, dhoni, pathan will boost the team batting and shuffle the batting order in depend on situation. In bowling praveen and bhajji are certain in the XI and other two spot are going to nehra, rp, sharma.

Posted by vinchester on (September 16, 2009, 5:10 GMT)

Well my dear pals, India will be playing a lot of one day cricket in the next 12 months. All of us will hope & prey that Sachin plays a long innings, without exhaustion & takes the field for the full 50 overs, assuming ofcourse India bats first.

Posted by jeet19800 on (September 16, 2009, 4:35 GMT)

Look at Ricky Ponting's Inning last night. It was way better than Tendulkar's both in terms of Class and aggression. Moreover, it came while batting second. I wud love to see tendulkar batting in 2nd inning and produce a inning like the way he played in finals. I am sure he would have chocked to a poor shot due to pressure. what about the match before finals with Srilanka? Comeone Guys....lets Not be hyper-sentimental junkies. we never won the world-cup since our great tendulakr started playing for india. I love him as much as any indian do, and i am proud of india's win. But Lets call a spade a spade!! You shall seek the truth and truth shall set you free (or get a world cup) - Bible

Posted by rushd.ahmad on (September 15, 2009, 19:24 GMT)

Sachin is the boss.Those ppl who says he is not a big match player i suggest them to check out his records.He is the Greatest Legend.We r the Lucky generation bcos he is in our time.I pray to Allah,that he may play at-least 2013.Sachin u r the ....(find no word to explain his GREATNESS) .

Posted by dab1 on (September 15, 2009, 19:19 GMT)

I dont think Mr Vinchester is a moron. I am a true Sachin fan. I think his body is giving up (he also mentions that). I dont have the details - but in 1 day format if scores a century at the later part he gets cramps - that is well known. Sapping heat -- did Jaisurya get cramps in the second match? The question that was asked -- Is Sachin physically fit for the short format? I think its a fair question.

Posted by sanjeevmukherjee2006 on (September 15, 2009, 16:33 GMT)

India's bowling was pathetic in the finals, india might hav e lost the match but bhajji bowled well supported by raina and yuvi, india has to look closely and deeply in teh bowling and fielding departmetnts.

Posted by sanjeevmukherjee2006 on (September 15, 2009, 16:26 GMT)

just continuing from my last post am not here for bashing any team, just feel bad after reading irrelevant comments, many people wrote that how many games sachin won for india well throughout 90's and mid 2000's, sachin was a one man army, a team cannot win any tournaments or matches , if they rely on one or two main players, why australia were dangerous because they didnt rely on hayden or warne alone they had a great team and that is why tehy have won 3 cosecutive world cups and won many matches in and outside australia, sri lanka used to depend to aravinda alone but only when tehy had great players like jayasurya, aravinda, murali and when they clicked together they won 1996 wc. for me australia or South AFrica are the favorites for champions trophy with India being the dark horses

Posted by ReverseSweepIndia on (September 15, 2009, 15:43 GMT)

I think that except few exceptions like one in Sharjah, he didn't had scores to show in big matches in last 18-19 years. But in last year or so he has started to turn the tables & is doing that consistently. Chennai test (Eng), VB series against Aus & now this match. He is fast becoming dependable big match player for india. Beware world teams!

Posted by pali_tigers on (September 15, 2009, 15:11 GMT)

@jnaesh...''thats the beauty of Guys of like ST and MS they play to their strenghts and inspite of Team's fortunes''....what do you mean by that? your comment is funny.

Sachin's inning was a typical inning of a pillar of the team's total score...didnt u see how he changed his way of scoring runs as overs passed by? Didnt u see he was the main part of the three successful partnerships ? Yuvraj is expected to play the way he plays, of course, that's the cause why he is selected at that order and he is the best there...but I don't find any cause of not giving Sachin Tendulkar the kind of salutations he deserves actually...why shouldnt you be proud of a player like him? Are you an Indian or what?

Posted by sanjeevmukherjee2006 on (September 15, 2009, 14:39 GMT)

wow wow wow..where have all the ppl gone esp from Lanka who had remarked, india is a bunch of 11 players of no use, few even wrote Sachin is gone he is finished, many wrote India plays for money, how many games did sachin won for india, india have 11 idle players, I tell you what eat a humble pie, Sachin is one of the greats alongwith Aravinda, Steve Waugh, Ponting etc, look at india's record in the last 5 years in India and outside india and look how many matches and tournaments SL won outside SL very less, so check the records first and then post the comments and btw what happened to mendis he has lost his class or batsman have studied him well, people say South Africans are chokers I would say Sri Lankan team are also chokers they have lost in the finals in the last 3 ICC tournaments (1) WC final 1997 to australia (2) T20 WC final to Pakistan (3) now Compaq cup to India and yes I agree india also had dismal run in the finals but now things arre improving

Posted by vigneshenoy on (September 15, 2009, 14:26 GMT)

Well,if any one is in a mood to question Sachin Tendulkar's ability,fitness etc,then he/she must be a serious case of Amnesia!!! This Legend has performed consistently from past 20 years,at different venues,under different conditions,circumstances,in the 2 major formats(T20 is a relatively new format,which was absent during the early years of Sachin's career). He's one man who can make crores of Indians forget their daily life stresses,work tensions etc.Having fans from the age of 3 to 90. Coming to yesterday's game,it was a masterclass knock,well supported by Dravid, MSD,Yuvi,Bhajji.I feel we missed sum1 like Praveen Kumar who has dis uncanny nack of making the new ball talk under lights a when batsmen are in a mood to attack. But all's well that ends well.Congratulations to the Master and Team India

Posted by HOTCHA on (September 15, 2009, 14:25 GMT)

There's only one thing to do here - salute the Master, for an innings of class. India, undoubtedly, owe this title to Sachin Tendulkar.

India almost lost the game through their sloppy fielding and catching. India needs to re-think their strategies, in the absence of fire and descipline from their pacemen. RP Singh was pathetic, Ishant Sharma was letharic and Nehra clueless. The part time spinners did an admirable job. I thought Suresh Raina was exceptional and atoned for not putting on some meaty runs on the board. Yusuf Pathan is exciting when he is on song, but how often he is in that mode? He got ducks in both the innings he played, and both were ordinary dismissals. He is a highly over-rated player. It is time to look at Cheteshwar Pujara, Sudeep Tyagi and even Subramaniam Badrinath. I wonder why he was not even selected. The selectors need to put on their thinking caps.

Posted by prashant1 on (September 15, 2009, 14:04 GMT)

Biggest tragedy in cricket is Sachin missing out golden years due to continous repetitive injuries which seriously hampered him from 2003-07. all other batsmen in this period were piling on cheap easy runs. we may just have missed out on the best of tendulkar!! but even now, he is simply the best batsmen we will ever see in our lifetimes. gods own batsman

Posted by Jharsha09 on (September 15, 2009, 13:39 GMT)

I am a Sri Lankan but without doubt India has the best team and the best batsman, possibly ever to play the game. Sachin's time may be numbered, and therefore, people should get to see him bat as much as possible, which is why he should open and not bat in the lower order. Sachin is an artist. Great writing, Jamie, as always.

Posted by jeet19800 on (September 15, 2009, 13:15 GMT)

No Doubt that Sachin is Not a big-match player. take any top 15 batsmen in the world cricket and anyone could have played a inning like that at their day. Whats the "Biggest" Deal? Yes, he played a classic inning, beautifully designed and paced and that comes from 20 odd years of experience. Although, if Youvraj wudnt have played the way he played, we could have still lost the match most probably. i dont think ST ever had the killer stroke play of a Gayle or Yuvraj or jaisurya. Not even the long inning acumen of ganguli or Mahela. I appreciate his hunger to stay in lime-light and contriute to the game. But when you have recieved so much in retrun (he is richest player in world cricket) you have to play atleast this well.

Posted by vsrajan on (September 15, 2009, 13:05 GMT)

Vinchester, you need a coaching to watch a cricket match. I am not a great admirer of Sachin, however, you cannot take the credit out of this Great Cricketer who rises to the occasion time and again to make India proud. And he has done it in the last 2 decades. We should be ashamed to say that he is old. As rightly done by MSD by sending Dravid to partner Sachin, he had taken the complete pressure out of him so that Sachin could concentrate on his natural game. Here is the result for every one to see. No amount praise could be enough in this particular match. Sheer concentration and focus, more importantly the determination to win, brought laurels to the country. Hats off to Sachin and Indians players. They prevailed under tremendous pressure and showed that they are real big match winners. It reminds me of CB series win! Carry on Guys!!! We are all with you!!!!

Posted by premaca on (September 15, 2009, 12:25 GMT)

@ AsifRathod

Well Asif, what if he had got out for duck. We should only think through what was happened not like predictions over the past. predictions are meant for future.

Posted by akulrocks2 on (September 15, 2009, 10:49 GMT)

Sachin is undoubtedly the best in this form of cricket. People thinking or argueing abt Sachin's fitness should see that any batsman in the world could need a runner if he plays a 46 over long innings in ODIs . Dont forget he is winning matches and that is what matters not if he does that with a runner or without one. Sachin is the best and hope he continues to play like that for ages. New players are like a short term but he is a true legend .

Posted by kavalier on (September 15, 2009, 10:32 GMT)

Vinchester you are a true moron and compound that by trying to say you are not a Sachin basher. Anyone will cramp and tire in the humidity and heat of Colombo. Also if you heard the commentary you would have noticed that the commentators pointed out it was the 1st time in his long career that Sachin has ever used a Runner. Aprreciate the innings and the fitness levels of a 36 year old. Can you survive for 3 hours with pads and all the running. It was a great innings and showed once and for all to his critics about his credentials as a Big match player, unlike Lara

Posted by AsifRathod on (September 15, 2009, 10:22 GMT)

Well, I don't want to question the talent of Sachin Tendulkar, we all know he is a legendary cricketer, and one of the modern day great. But, at one point he was batting at, 124 from 129 balls( he's completed his century at 92 balls means only 24 runs in last 37 balls), and suddenly he start hitting Mendis for 6,4,4, (two fours were reverse sweep very risky indeed), that over kick started Indian score towards 300. Now if he had lost his wicket at, 124 from 130 balls, than we all will start questioning his innings( cause,he was playing with injury in his leg and Indian team could fall well short of 300 at that point) . This is just speculation... :)

Posted by Davesh_cricket_analyst on (September 15, 2009, 10:05 GMT)

Before the series, Jayawardene wrote a column saying that SL middle order is not making runs and the responsibility lies with him & Sanga. But would any analyst care to look at Mahela's record in the last 2 years ? He's averaging 24 in the last 2 years of ODIs with 1 century. I think middle order is fine, its the top order of SL that needs to score some runs. Why is Mahela's place in the ODI team not questioned at all ? Regarding Sachin, i don't think that this was his best innings in finals nor do i think that Sharjah innings against Australia was his best. His best in the finals was against australia (2nd Final) in 2008. He didn't score a century (scored 93) but he scored those 93 almost on one leg. He was carrying an injury from the last match and so couldn't take a runner and his foot movement during the strokeplay was severely restricted. But the champion batsman managed to score at a strike rate of 100 just by making angles with his bat. That to me, was an unbelievable innings.

Posted by vinchester on (September 15, 2009, 9:37 GMT)

I am not a Sachin basher, but this is a fact. Now that he is old , whenever he plays a long innings in the one dayers, his body cannot take the load anymore. invariably in the later part of his innings{ as it happenedin this match} he has to call for assistance a runner what have you. Not only that his opponents notice this and bowl accordingly thus restricting his runs, which begs the question " is he physically fit to play in this formatof the game. One solution would be he should now drop down the order so that he playe less no. of overs.

Posted by Notout_Naveen on (September 15, 2009, 8:21 GMT)

As always it is such a pleasure to watch when sachin bats more so when he bats with that sublime touch & gets century.For me theres no better sight in cricket than sachin's batting. Sanga was so proactive in field placement for sachin yet he couldnt deny a big hundred..goes to show how over the years sachin has mastered his art. I only hope & pray god to give good health n fitness to sachin and rest sachin will take care of himself.

Posted by sherishahmir on (September 15, 2009, 7:51 GMT)

Congrats india on winning the final, credit to MS Dhoni and team mates especially Sachin who played superbly and shown his class to be the one of batting legend on cricket world landscape. Looking forward to c india how they take on Pakistan in upcoming C-trophy, when Pak also got its main players back in the side, hopefully again it would be entrilling counter as it happened always in past and shall provide a good entertainment to cricket lover all around the world. Tribute to maestro Sachin Tendulkar to set more milestones. Shahzad from Pakistan, live in Bahrain.

Posted by PatDurbs on (September 15, 2009, 7:36 GMT)

Sachin - a true superstar! A spiritual man with a deep sense of compassion and empathy, and also the greatest batsman of all time to boot. During the recent IPLT20 tournament in South Africa, I called him and asked if he would be prepared to meet with my son, who was recovering from cancer and is a great Sachin fan. Without hesitation he agreed, and made time in his obviously busy schedule to meet us. It is far more important and rewarding to be a complete human being than just to be famous or talented - but the complete package??? Stupendous!! Thank you Sachin for all the joy you bring to the countless millions all over the globe, and I hope you have all the joy and peace that they all wish for you also.

Posted by bhaskar_79 on (September 15, 2009, 7:23 GMT)

Funny... no sign of the tendulkar bashers anywhere.. what happened to the guys who thought sachin didnt win big matches for India? Would anyone care for a debate about his greatness now??

Posted by afs_talyarkhan on (September 15, 2009, 7:18 GMT)

Another great innings on a flat track by Sachin. Team batting under lights at Premadasa has no right to get anywhere near 300 yet Sri Lanka almost got there - as Manjrekar says in his column India's fast bowling and fielding aren't up to the mark.

Posted by Saim93 on (September 15, 2009, 6:55 GMT)

A truly majestic innings by sachin, he is a born class act that will never fail.A great win achieved by india which they thoroughly deserved.

Posted by ParamIyer on (September 15, 2009, 6:40 GMT)

A beautifully written article complimenting a beautifully constructed innings. One MORE reason why ODI's would still need to be around! One cannot imagine these kind of innings in T20's. Tendulkar, Kandamby and Harbhajan showed that with two good teams around, ODI's would still continue to bring in the crowds.

Posted by jeet19800 on (September 15, 2009, 6:14 GMT)

Tendulkar ...well 1st of all let me make it clear that he played a superb innings. very well designed and superb strokes.

But i got a huge complaint against Indian cricket. He you look carefully at the innings If yuvraj wudnt have played the way he played we would have still lost the match. thats the beauty of Guys of like ST and MS they play to their strenghts and inspite of Team's fortunes. Thats y the old saying ...Bad boys stand first.

playing for 20 odd years....and the kind of attention and rewards on gets its but natural for someone to play like that. A dilshan, A Mahela a Dravid could play the smililar innings with equal or even better elan. But ..Like all things indian ...we are habitual of cult worship and forget the realities. Jai ho..!!

Posted by kirannarendran on (September 15, 2009, 5:41 GMT)

Sachin Tendulkar is a true legend. He doesn't show his emotions on the field nor he gets dejected.He is a role model for all youngsters. It's good to see him raising his bar in the crunch matches.It still awkward that people questions his commitment when fails . Sachin,Please dont quit before the 2011 World Cup.

Posted by jnanesh on (September 15, 2009, 5:37 GMT)

Sahcin is sachin (May God blees him always). no one take his place in any sort of game and today's innings unforgetable and one of his great innings and thanks to Rahul with his company, cheers india. NRaj

Posted by licec on (September 15, 2009, 5:15 GMT)

In all this celebration we always forget Dravid.It is he who gave Tendulkar the actual support and license to fire and he himself fired as the opener when it really mattered and along with tendulkar,the solid start he gave,without losing a wicket!An absolute perfectionist that Rahul Dravid is!

Posted by Looch on (September 15, 2009, 3:14 GMT)

Tendulkar is a true champion, his class will always shine through when his team needs him. Well played India and I am looking forward to the Australian ODI tour, I'm sure we will see some great cricket!

Posted by cricketforpeace on (September 15, 2009, 1:38 GMT)

There is no letup in the intensity with which Tendulkar plays his brand of cricket.It has been a blessing to the world of cricket and Indian cricket in particular to have a personality such as Tendulkar play for India. Accolades have been pouring in all throughout the past twenty years that he has been playing the game.What I remember is that whenever Tendulkar plays the game the way he has played at this Compaq Cup-it just lifts everybody's spirit.People tend to forget the troubles they face in their day to day life-be it with their family,work etc whenever Tendulkar plays in this marvellous fashion.This has been the singular greatest achievement for his country(my humble opinion!).We all still remember his exploits in 1996 against Pakistan in the test series, in 1998 against Australia at Sharjah,at the World Cup in 2003,in the series against Australia in 07-08 and now at this Compaq Cup.Thank You Tendulkar for always making my day!! May the Almighty grant you peace & good health!!

Posted by M4yur on (September 15, 2009, 1:11 GMT)

Tendulkar is the best. I LOVE him.

Posted by niraj13 on (September 15, 2009, 0:55 GMT)

What a player Sachin is! With this kind of form, he can easily be a part of he 2011 WC. He is definitely the greatest player of the modern cricketing era and he has proven that time and again. I cannot believe that there are people out there who still criticize him. Today's effort was a great team effort with stellar individual performances. Dhoni captained the side really well. If India continues this momentum, they can realize the WC dream in 2011.

Posted by lynds on (September 14, 2009, 23:59 GMT)

Sir Donald Bradman told Tendulkar that he reminded him of himself. There can be no greater compliment than that. 100 intenational 100s look well and truly on the cards. The last 3 ODI hundreds I have seen him score - 117no against Australia, 163no against NZ and yesterday's - have been sublime. Keep on doing it, Sachin

Posted by gudolerhum on (September 14, 2009, 23:19 GMT)

There is little doubt that those of us who have seen Sachin Tendulkar bat or even just listened to or read about his exploits have been privileged to witness one of the greatest batsmen of all time. In my opinion he is certainly the best batsmen to have come along since Sir Donald Bradman, whom I never saw. How fortunate we are that he has been able to continue at such a peak for this long and I hope that I get the chance to see him one more time.

Posted by Koushik_Biswas on (September 14, 2009, 23:05 GMT)

Just like his 85 other centuries or other final-winning feats, this one, too will soon be forgotten by analysts and experts who live in the world of "Sachin-denial". They will argue XYZ is a better batsman because ... (proceeding to quote some subjective argument). I am sad to resort to a belligerent tone, but this provides an opportunity to remind a few people of the truth without resorting to lengthy database queries. Actually you can trash the database. Sachin's legend is not in the numbers, but in how he makes you feel. Like, a century compiled in a risk free fashion. There is no column in any table that says "Risk-free?" with value of Y/N. Like no aerial shot until the free hit that brought up his 50. Like silently switching gears to singles to give Yuvraj the hitting license instead of going for records. Like his stance (no this is not idol worship, purists agree that his stance is awesome). Like his steely face (this * is * idol worship). Let darkness be, for the light to shine.

Posted by bonaku on (September 14, 2009, 22:12 GMT)

nice one jamie. I was so thrilled to see sachin in such a good nick. I am seeing him in this mood after a long time. May be good treats are ahead for us. .. :) ... i want sachin keep going like this...

Posted by SibaMohanty on (September 14, 2009, 22:00 GMT)

Grand win. Sri Lanka gave a real hot chase with Indian fielding showing signs of crumbling apart. But Bhajji, Raina and Yuvi bowled exceptionally well. Sachin was like Sachin, the true legend. And dont forget the man who walked out to open the innings with him. Rahul Dravid, ever the team man, took up the responsibility and delivered. And how! Cometh the hour, cometh man! Hats off...

Posted by Deenesh on (September 14, 2009, 21:42 GMT)

Let's not forget Dravid. Only a partner like him can allow you to play your natural game. that is what he did with tendulkar, and we should realize his value. He has no equal and India are really fortunate to have someone like him in an era where all the greats have retired or are fading away.

Posted by AvidCricFan on (September 14, 2009, 21:27 GMT)

From India's perspective, the big dissappointment of the series were Dinesh Karthik and Yusuf Pathan. Karthik avergared 10 from two innings and Pathan only 0.5 from two innings. As a batting allrounder, Pathan is averging 22 from 19 innings and Karthik is averging 23.4 from 25 innings. His place in the team can only be justified as a specialist batsman. Both have had enough chances given. I am not sure by the selection committee is persisting with them when so many are waiting in the wings.

Posted by Madhavkhanna on (September 14, 2009, 20:36 GMT)

Tendulkar keeps getting better and better. He played a really well paced innings and denied the Sri Lankans any chances. Hats off to Dravid too, he did a fine job and both batsman put up a great platform to allow the Indian middle order to fire. Tendulkar is playing without the burden, over the years, I think people's expectations have come down a bit, plus he has more support in the playing XI now. However, he himself continues to improve. I was really happy to see him running those singles with the same intensity he did twenty years ago. He is truely a lengend of gigantic proportions and I hope he continues to blaze away for a few more years...

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Jamie AlterClose
Jamie Alter Senior sub-editor While teachers in high school droned on about Fukuyama and communism, young Jamie's mind tended to wander to Old Trafford and the MCG. Subsequently, having spent six years in the States - studying Political Science, then working for an insurance company - and having failed miserably at winning any cricket converts, he moved back to India. No such problem in Bangalore, where he can endlessly pontificate on a chinaman who turned it around with a flipper, and why Ricky Ponting is such a good hooker. These days he divides his time between playing office cricket and constant replenishments at one of the city's many pubs.
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