India in England 2011 July 12, 2011

Tendulkar not thinking of 100th hundred

ESPNcricinfo staff
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Sachin Tendulkar is one century away from reaching 100 international tons and has an opportunity to achieve that on a historic occasion at Lord's, where India and England will play the 2000th Test later this month. Tendulkar, who has 51 centuries in Tests and 48 in ODIs, however, said the landmark wasn't preoccupying his build-up to the game.

"I am not thinking of records," Tendulkar told the Daily Telegraph. "I am just thinking of enjoying this tour. The secret to any performance is not in chasing records. I think about, 'What is the best way to enjoy the game, and how can I enhance that enjoyment factor?'

"If I enhance the enjoyment then, naturally, the standard of play becomes higher. To me, that is more important. If I am playing well, things can happen. I don't need to go around chasing them. It is a process. You construct a solid foundation and build on it."

Tendulkar opted out of India's tour of the West Indies, where they won the ODI series 3-2 and the Tests 1-0. It was India's first international assignment after their World Cup win, of which Tendulkar was an integral part. "I was extremely delighted. It was something I had always dreamt about," Tendulkar said of India's triumph in his sixth World Cup. "You start playing cricket, and one day you walk away as part of a world champion team.

"I took up playing serious cricket because in 1983, we won the World Cup, and that was a big turning point in terms of considering cricket a full-time profession. That moment was a decisive one. I felt, 'I want to play for India one day'. It was a huge boost. From then I started working hard."

When asked of his plans for the future, Tendulkar said it was important he left behind a good legacy whenever he chose to leave the game. "For me, it's not about breaking records or creating new ones. It's about adding value to my team. Records will be set by me, they might be broken by someone else.

"They're not going to stay permanently. But the impression that I leave on people will last forever, I feel. The impression that I leave behind - to me that is important. If I can motivate the next young cricketers, that will be a big contribution."

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  • BillyCC on July 15, 2011, 23:09 GMT

    Dravid_Gravitas, thanks for the interesting analysis. I would certainly agree there is some truth to your analysis in the early 2000s when Tendulkar did not perform well in crucial points of a series when players like Dravid and Laxman did. However, Tendulkar has improved in this stat significantly over the past four years and this is all the more amazing in that it comes in the twilight of his career. He has contributed significantly in series against Australia, South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka recently. At the same time, Dravid's stats have fallen. If Tendulkar continues in this vein, surely there will be no argument of his match-winning abilities.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 19:19 GMT

    Cricinfo should have posted this first: Sachin and Dravid in wins since Dravid's debut: Part 1: I strongly believe that cricket is more than numbers. It's more about the will to fight till the end and take the pressure head on and soak it in. But looks like Sachin fanatics aka Dravid bashers are hell bent on numbers as Sachin apparently seems to have stronger numbers. Stats can have as many filters as one can envision. So, here I go with some filters from cricinfo. Since Dravid's debut in all the matches that India has won, Sachin made 4599 runs @ 66.65 with 17 100s and 16 50s from 82 innings. They are jaw-dropping numbers. But, I just wanted to see how he compares with 'a dozen a dime player', 'one dimensional player', 'so called walls and rescue players' aka Rahul Dravid. For the same period, Dravid scored 4927 runs @ 65.69 with 14 100s and 22 50s from 89 innings. The difference in average between the two players is just under 1 run per inning (0.96 runs/inning) in favour of Sachin.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 6:37 GMT

    My take: Part 3: How does it really matter if there is beauty of balance with numbers that aren't as good as those of Dravid, 'a dime a dozen' player? Indian Cricket has two eras - pre-Dravid and Dravid. Period! We are in an era where Dravid made the bowlers bite dust with his clinical precision, ruthless patience and stroke play, if needed. I'm not saying we won only because of Dravid or only because of Sachin. It's a team game and we win as a team. But nobody asked Sachin (god? Loll..) to not to contribute more than Dravid with the bat in wins. Too much ado about nothing! In the purest and highest form of Cricket, Sachin is a great but he is no match to Dravid throughout the 15 years since Dravid's debut. In the tensest and/or the biggest of stages in the shorter formats, Sachin fails as we all know by now. I rest my case.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 6:18 GMT

    My take: Part 2: Behind all these beautiful executions of Sachin and Dravid, Dravid's numbers are simply head and shoulders above Sachin in those matches that brought glory and happiness to millions of Indians. If one has to get carried away and call a player as 'god' for the beauty of balance alone, with numbers that aren't as good to back up those beautiful executions, then what should one call a player whose elegance, skill, concentration and intensity are unparalleled and with numbers that are head and shoulders above 'god' in situations that mattered most? Surely, at least, one shouldn't be dissing him. I strongly feel that Sachin caught the imagination of the world and people got caught up in pre-Dravid era. Wake up! This is Dravid era. The shouts about the beauty of balance and the constant dissing of the highest contributor for Indian Cricket when it mattered most is a clear cut case of too much ado about nothing.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 6:16 GMT

    My take: Part 1: As they say, devil is in the details. I always maintained that both of them accumulated lot of useless records but Sachin stands head and shoulders above Dravid when it comes to useless records that don't mean a dime for India and fans of Indian Cricket like bashing minnows badly, exposing tailenders after reaching a landmark, extravagant shots after a personal milestone etc etc.... On the other hand the so called 'dime a dozen player' is head and shoulders above Sachin (god? Lol..) in wins where Sachin could neither cross an average of 60 nor score more number of runs than Dravid in the same number of innings; that too in those matches that brought glory and happiness to millions across the globe. Sachin and Lara may possess the best mechanics during a shot execution. Ponting may possess the most brutal pull. Dravid may have the most pleasing on the eyes pull or the most elegant and effortless square cut ever. VVS may have the jaw dropping flick we ever saw......

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 6:12 GMT

    Part3: And lastly, I wanted to see the stats for only those matches where both the players were involved excluding Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Sachin reads the same 4183 runs in 74 innings @ 64.35 with 14 100s and 17 50s. Dravid reads 4506 in 79 innings @ 66.26 with 15 100s and 23 50s. The difference in the average of the two players is nearly 2 runs per inning (1.91 runs per inning to be precise). Other significant observations about the draws: If notout innings are discarded Dravid crossed 50 runs or more in 56% of his innings whereas Sachin crossed 50 runs or more in only 47% of his innings. If notout innings are considered as complete, Dravid crossed 50 runs or more in 48% of his innings whereas Sachin crossed 50 runs or more in only 41% of his innings ;)

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 5:59 GMT

    Part2: I then filtered Bangladesh and Zimbabwe from the stats: Sachin reads 4183 in 74 innings @ 64.35 with 14 100s and 17 50s. Dravid reads 5039 runs in 91 innings @ 64.60 with 16 100s and 26 50s. The difference in the average between the two players now is 0.25 tilted in favour of Dravid. So once minnows are removed Sachin lost 2.67 runs per inning (2.42 + 0.25 = 2.67 runs/inning) to Dravid, once again confirming that Sachin is a better minnow basher than Dravid ;)

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 5:56 GMT

    Sachin and Dravid in draws since Dravid's debut: Part 1: Sachin reads 4516 runs in 77 innings @ 67.40 with 16 100s and 17 50s. Dravid reads 5264 runs in 94 innings @ 64.98 with 17 100s and 27 50s. The difference in the average between the two players is 2.42 runs per inning in favour of Sachin.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 5:55 GMT

    Part3: And lastly, I wanted to see the stats for only those matches where both the players were involved excluding Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Sachin reads 3238 runs from 65 innings with 10 100s and 15 50s @ sub 60 average of 57.82. Dravid reads 3431 runs from 65 innings with 9 100s and 15 50s @ supra 60 average of 61.27. The difference in the average is nearly 3.5 runs per inning. This is the filter that excludes the historic series wins in the Caribbean in 2006 and 2011 as well. How fair is it to exclude those stats from Dravid's and India's historic achievements is anybody's guess. I still did that so that Sachin's fanatics can't cry hoarse that Dravid played more matches, more innings blah blah blah ;). Next topic to follow: Sachin and Dravid in draws since Dravid's debut ;).

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on July 15, 2011, 5:53 GMT

    Part2: I then filtered out Bangladesh and Zimbabwe from the stats. Now Sachin reads 3386 runs from 68 innings with 11 100s and 15 50s @ sub 60 average of 57.38. Dravid reads 3869 runs from 73 innings with 10 100s and 18 50s at a supra 60 average of 61.41. The difference in average between the two players is now more than 4 runs per inning (4.03/inning) in favour of Dravid. So, Sachin essentially lost nearly 5 runs per inning (0.96 + 4.03 = 4.99 runs/inning) to Dravid once minnows were filtered from the stats proving that Sachin rises to the occasion more when pressure is less from minnows. Sachin can be termed as a better minnow basher than Dravid ;). Another way of putting it is, Sachin on the whole lost 9.27 runs/inning when minnows are eliminated from the stats whereas Dravid on the whole lost 4.28 runs/inning. So, Sachin indeed is once in a century's unique minnow basher ;)

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