India v West Indies, 2nd Test, Mumbai, 1st day

The crowd at Tendulkar's feet

After the fall of the second wicket, time stood still. The state of the game, or the performance of the other batsman got little attention. The crowd of 25,000 came to see just one man

Sidharth Monga in Mumbai

November 14, 2013

Comments: 136 | Text size: A | A

At 3.31pm, M Vijay gets out to a bat-pad catch off Shane Shillingford. There are about 20 overs to go to stumps. Two wickets are down. You don't expect a nightwatchman, with so much time to go, but sometimes people expect the worst. They all look towards the Indian dressing room. A support staff person moves about. There is no sight of either the regular No.4 or a nightwatchman. People keep looking. No signs. Anticipation builds. Tension builds. Suddenly someone realises the umpires have asked Vijay to wait because they are checking the legitimacy of the delivery. A minute has passed, and now someone has realised that. Time has stopped in India once again. Perhaps one last time, who knows?

There are old folk in the crowd, old enough to be his father, who might have seen him as the curly-haired kid in the maidans. Middle-aged people who have given up work today, who have grown with him, who have lived their lives with him as a part of them. Eighteen to 20-year olds who weren't even born when he debuted. Not a single person is sitting. Then they see Vijay has been given the marching orders, 25,000 heads - the loudest 25,000 you can ever imagine - turn to the dressing room. Two wickets have fallen in this over, but nobody is bothered.

Sachin Tendulkar walks out to bat in his final Test, India v West Indies, 2nd Test, Mumbai, 1st day, November 14, 2013
People are so busy counting his steps down the pavilion stairs they haven't even noticed the West Indies team have already formed a guard of honour for him © BCCI

Vijay has become Shillingford's victim twice, twice he has come back flexing his elbow, but nobody has read into the reaction because they are too busy waiting to give the next man in the best possible welcome. So Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar puts on his arm guard, helmet, then gloves, and gets up. Now he comes into public view, and people lose control. They are so busy counting his steps down the pavilion stairs they haven't even noticed the West Indies team have already formed a guard of honour for him. Cheteshwar Pujara, the unbeaten batsman, has joined in. The umpires join in too.

There walks Tendulkar. Possibly for the last time, because the West Indies batsmen haven't turned up in this series. He looks up to adjust to the outside light. Shakes the hand of the West Indies captain, Darren Sammy. Raises his bat to the opposition who earlier in the day gifted him a jersey signed by all of them. Nods once again in acknowledgement.

Tendulkar now bends, picks a piece of the soil, touches it on the peak of his forehead, and sort of crosses his heart. One of the umpires now gives Tendulkar the proper guard. By the time everything has settled down and Tendulkar faces his first ball, it's 3.35pm. Slow over-rate? Nobody cares.

Shillingford bowls, Tendulkar defends with the turn, it reaches on the bounce to short leg. People worry, people go quiet. "A mini heart-attack," one man shouts. Tendulkar defends the next ball, and the over is done.

It's 3.37pm when the next over starts. Six minutes, two balls, countless emotions. Now Pujara takes strike. Now Pujara cuts. Half-cut, half-punch. Past point for four. The crowd goes "Sachiiiiiin, Sachin". Now Pujara drives exquisitely through cover for four. The crowd goes "Sachiiiiin, Sachin". Pujara plays the whole over, but a man invokes the underworld classic, Satya, and shouts "Mumbai ka king kaun? [Who is the king of Mumbai]?" The whole stand replies, "Sachiiiiin, Sachin". "Cricket ka king kaun?" "Sachiiiiin, Sachin."

It's been 10 minutes since they stood up in the stands. Not one person has sat down. Shillingford starts a fresh over. Long-on back, a slip and two short legs in. Tendulkar stands tall, bat in air, squats, then the bat touches down once before the ball is delivered. He sweeps, and a cheer as loud as when India won the World Cup here more than two years ago goes up. We won't have another Bradman. Or maybe we will in the next innings.

You have got to keep in mind that this is a batsman who last scored a Test century in the first week of 2011. Averages 32 since then. Many Indians have argued over the last year that he has overstayed his welcome. The farewell series has been made garish by tasteless administrators trying to milk it. Then you watch this, and wonder what a loss it would have been had he gone without giving people this opportunity.

Forget the garishness. Forget that the opposition has left its Test-match temperament at the customs. Let's escape ephemerally once again. Let's lose ourselves again. Let's forget the last local train before peak-hour traffic. Let's applaud a forward-defensive like a goal.

So Tendulkar defends and we applaud. Then he takes a single to move to 3 off 9. In the next over, Shillingford provides a short ball, which he cuts away for four. About the 100-odd people who had sat down are back up again. They are watching from the terrace of the nearby Income Tax building. The big screen now shows Ramakant Achrekar, Tendulkar's coach, and Rajni Tendulkar, his mother, who are also here. They are both in wheelchairs now. How proud they must be.

The farewell series has been made garish by tasteless administrators trying to milk it. Then you watch this, and wonder what a loss it would have been had he gone without giving people this opportunity

Slowly, Tendulkar finds the rhythm. He is looking as assured as he has done in this year. He is also getting into the last-dance spirit. The 14th ball he faces, he reaches its pitch and drives it against the turn, because the gaps are on the off side. Past mid-off it goes. Tendulkar 12 off 14. India? It doesn't matter.

By now, every possible rhythmical chant "Sachin" can be made into has been chanted. "Sachiiiiin, Sachin." "Saaaaaachin." "Sachin, Sachin-Sachin-Sachin, Saaaachin." How come no one is out of tune when they chant his name?

This is the same ground where Tendulkar made his first-class debut. Lalchand Rajput, who was run out for 99 batting with Tendulkar, is here. Shishir Hattangadi, the opener in that match, is here. Many players who made their first-class debuts after that are here. Ashok Patel, the bowler who got him out for the first time in first-class cricket, and now lives in the US, has also come here. The Wankhede has changed completely. From the intimate concrete bowl it has now become a classy monster. Tendulkar is still there. Possibly one last time, but he is still batting. A banner in Wankhede says, "Now only humans will play cricket."

Cheteshwar Pujara's sole purpose in life by now is to take the single, and hand over the strike to Tendulkar. Once he drives to long-on, and Mexican wave dies abruptly because Tendulkar is now on strike. Tendulkar is looking solid. Moving right forward in defence against the quicks. Staying back to Shillingford because he hasn't been the best at reading the doosra, so he wants to give himself time to adjust to them off the pitch. He clips Marlon Samuels off the toes in the 27th over, and with that reaches 29 off 45. In his next over, Samuels pitches short, and he punches it to reach 33 off 52.

Tino Best, in the meantime, lobs a throw direct into the stumps at Tendulkar's end. The whole crowd goes "aye aye", which in Mumbai doesn't mean yes. It is their way of pulling someone up. Someone who is threatening their boy. Tendulkar, 40, is still their boy. They will protect him. When Best bowls a bouncer. When Best goes too far in the follow-through. "Tino sucks," shouts one stand. "Shush," goes the rest of the stadium. Best does a namaste [folded hands] as he walks back to his fielding position at fine leg, and all is well between him and the crowd.

The crowd actually couldn't be bothered less. They have come here to watch Tendulkar bat. They want to return tomorrow to watch him bat. They also want him to take most of the bowling left. Story of Tendulkar's life. Realistic expectations and him don't go together.

At 4.54pm, Tendulkar has played out the last ball of the day. He is 38 off 73. Pujara is 34 off 49, and has played some pretty decent shots, but no one has noticed. He could have streaked, and no one would have noticed. It's all forgiven this last time. You can focus on that man's batting alone, especially given he has batted well.

For about 10 seconds, Tendulkar looks at the pitch, waits for Pujara to join him, and then walks back. He raises the bat as he does. That's his promise. Time will stop tomorrow again.

Sidharth Monga is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by mrgupta on (November 18, 2013, 8:19 GMT)

@Stel En: Sachin has a batting average of 53.78 at the end of his 200th test match. His average at the end of his 177th test was 56.94 which is more than current batting averages of Kallis after 164 tests and only fractionally lower than Sanga who has 56.98 currently after 117 tests. And i think you checked the wrong stats for Ponting because his career average is only 51.85 which about 2 runs lower than Sachin's final batting average. Let these players play atleast 177 tests and manage an avg of 56.94 and then we can discuss who is better in the most important stat. and oh forgot to mention all of these whom you mentioned have lower Away batting average then Sachin.

Posted by mrgupta on (November 18, 2013, 8:05 GMT)

@latecut_04: Not denying that Rahul Dravid was a great player but just to put forward your point you cannot demean another great player. Record of 100 centuries bogus? You know Sachin has a batting average of 40+ in all the countries that he has played? The only player ever to do so among those who have played in more than 6 countries! If record of 100 centuries is Bogus then so is that of batting avg 99.94.

Posted by   on (November 18, 2013, 5:37 GMT)

Since I was born in 1980's, It was the demise of my childhood whn tendulker bid final gud bye as a cricketer, but i ill always remember him as a greater human being. He played the game of gentlmen like a true gentleman. He came to play cricket n thts all wat he did thruout his 24 year old career. Sachin never went outrageous like todays youngster while celebrating milestones. He continued to celebrate his centuries like the way he did after scoring his maiden test century against England. His batting stats are unquestionable but the his dedication, love and sincerity towards cricket is out of ths world. Yes, being a Pakistani I always wanted to see Tendulker out cheaply but as a cricket fan His stature and my respect for him knows no boundaries. Best of Luck for the rest of your life..#ThankyouSachin. Thanx for all the excitement. Aaah u will be missed by cricket fans all around the world.

Posted by nilnk on (November 16, 2013, 3:41 GMT)

An Absolutely Fantastic Article By Sidharth Monga. Yes He is the Cricketing God & From Today onwards only humans will play cricket (As WI will possible not get the second innings lead on India). @ThankYouSachin. #Respect.

Posted by Naresh28 on (November 16, 2013, 0:44 GMT)

@zaheerahmed - you probably need to look more closely at cricinfo. Its not only Indian writers we have tons of articles by English writers as well e.g. Ed Smith. We have people ltons of ex-players world over giving tributes to this great player e.g Kallis (on supersport), Pollock, Lara, Warne, Gavaskar, even Pakistan ex-players.

Posted by KingOwl on (November 16, 2013, 0:40 GMT)

Dear god, this is too much! I am a Sri Lankan fan and I have great respect for Tendulkar as a batsman. But this god worshiping is beyond me (or any Sri Lankan for that matter). He is a great batsman (or was, more accurately). But, Dravid was probably a better batsman. So, shall we put things in perspective, please!

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 18:53 GMT)

Tendulkar has highest runs and most centuries. But he is behind in the most important stat - Test batting average. Kallis, Sangakkara and Ponting ahead of him.

Posted by Sharath_Rocker on (November 15, 2013, 15:18 GMT)

Thank you Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar

Posted by Sharath_Rocker on (November 15, 2013, 15:17 GMT)

Thank you Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar

Posted by swarzi on (November 15, 2013, 14:53 GMT)

"Greatness is a product of temperament, rather than style"! You can have all the style and correct technique in the world, if you don't have the WILL POWER to go out and DO EXACTLY what you and your fans expect of you, you could achieve a lot, but not necessarily great things - though what your achievements may look great superficially! Greatness is measured in the RATIO OF VERY DIFFICULT TASKS ACHIEVED Vs THOSE NOT ACHIEVED! A 40% ratio is a pass mark! Virat Kholi for me is already a great in ODI cricket! He has achieved so many VERY DIFFICULT TASKS in his very short career - he's awesome. If Kholi is not great in ODI cricket, then Bradman was not great! Both are short and sweet career stories, if Kholi's career was to be terminated right now1

Posted by IPSY on (November 15, 2013, 14:30 GMT)

As Chief Critic of the Gt SRT, though I paid him my tribute in an earlier post; I again wish him and family all the best in their future endeavors. On the cricket politics side though, my 'headline' for his over-hyped send off is: "A FRUITLESS FINAL 3 YEARS FOR SACHIN"! This is in relation to his BIG FAILURE of not being able to 'SCORE A FINAL 100 before he retires, after trying for 3 CONSECUTIVE YEARS! Yes, Sachin has made an indelible mark in cricket; but why allow him to play out-of-form for 3 CONSECUTIVE YEARS while aveging 31, just to get a 100? It made him to look bigger than the game! But I'm not one who thinks that he's as great as one or two of his peers, some retired, some playing! It's known that he fails badly, when SPECIFIC PRESSURES are put on him - my reason for not rating him with players like Lara, who love such challenges to PROVE THEIR EXCEPTIONALISM. Eg: Lara took 4 years to achieve what seemed unachievable for almost 40 years; then took ONE YEAR to do even better!

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 13:50 GMT)

Saw cricket being played by greats like Gavaskar & Viv Richard, who made the mockery of the opposition when in prime form. But then Tendulkar showed the world, how to capture the love of people with humbleness and politeness, and made people believe that "Cricket is STILL a gentleman's game". Even though the hype created was a little in excess......but then like they say Bombay walls do it in style.

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 12:59 GMT)

I am a Pakistani and prayed for Sachin Tendulkar to score low against us but prayed for him to send the bowlers of all other teams on a unending leather chase. I prayed for a century for him at Wankhede but it was not to be, yet I savored every shot that he played for his brilliant 74 (with my heart in my throat at the age of 72). I admired him not only for his mastery but even more for his demeanor, humility, grace and poise. Sachin, thanks for such wonderful memories and a display of craftsmanship par excellence and may you live long and in good health & happiness with your loved ones.

Posted by latecut_04 on (November 15, 2013, 12:58 GMT)

This is getting unbelievably ridiculous!!!The frenzy media can create is unbelievable and I swear by that.All these posters who say 'i was there';'flood after sachin' and what not have a lot and lot to do with the hype built by media(both print and visual).For the last 2.5 years he has been a walking wicket and it just goes to prove that anything is saleable to Indian middle class.does anyone remember the shape in which he turned up for the England series in 2011.We were TestNo:1 and ODI champions and a lot was at stake then.Ofcourse no one does because media did not highlight it.and down under when he did not hit that 100th international hundred(a bogus record in itself created by media and his sponsors)an ex player turned commentator said"this is what happens when you are part of a losing team"!!!ofcourse critics can ask 'why dont you stay away' and my answer is this is precisely the reason I am here.just to call a spade a spade.please please publish.Hail Dravid The Fortress!!!

Posted by vxttemp on (November 15, 2013, 12:27 GMT)

@Zaheerahmed: You can't imagine what Sachin would've achieved had he got the support of bowlers like donald, pollock, mcmillan, fannie devilliers or steyn, morkel and co or McGrath, gillespie, warnie, lee and co or wasin, waqar, shoab and co. Some of the Indian greats in the bowling department played along with Sachin. Thiru kumaran, dodda ganesh, mohanty, subrato benarjee, abey kuruvilla, noel david, sunil joshi, salil ankola, vivek razdan, venkatapathy raju, rajesh chauhan, laxmiratan shukla to mention a few. I've absolutely no respect for Srinath, venkatesh. I've little respect for Zaheer, Irfan, Balaji, Kumble, praveen kumar, bhuvaneshwar, aswin and shami.

Posted by The-love on (November 15, 2013, 12:18 GMT)

@Zaheerahmed ->I will give you three reasons without stats.

(1)1 billion people used to smile when He used to hit centuries. (2)1 billion people used to cry whenever India used to lose in spite of his best efforts. (3) 1 billion hearts used to beat when Sachin used to play.

It will never happen now.If you are not an Indian,you can never understand what Sachin is.Never mind,Kallis is a legend,you can carry on enjoying his cricket.For now,let us live this emotional time.Cricinfo please publish.

Posted by Incredible_Syed on (November 15, 2013, 12:10 GMT)

I have been a keen follower of cricket since 1996 world cup and watched Lara bat as closely as sachin and would always have a long discussion regarding Who's better Lara or Sachin in my Engineering days...and I was the only one who used to give the stats on what Lara has done...and my opinion was that Lara was a better Test batsman than Sachin and Sachin the greatest ODI batsman...I used to fight for this...but never Imagined a day would come where I will say maybe I was wrong...HE IS THE BEST CRICKETER TO HAVE PLAYED CRICKET IN ALL FORMS....

Posted by creative3dprabhu on (November 15, 2013, 9:19 GMT)

Really we all miss u sachin..All your records is very massive and its unbeatable one...Thank you master,master blaster,litltle master of cricket...Not only mumbai cherishes with master ...we r from south..most sachin memorable banners are grown in rural areas and still keep going.. and all the fans are in emotional of leaving you..we cant just thi nk of it here after no one is going to see sachin in ground...really miss u ..No words to say tears coming off....

Posted by rajcl on (November 15, 2013, 9:07 GMT)

Mr Zaheerahmed, sachin almost 8 - 10 years take India to winning possisions,,India win or loss he given his best every time ( winning maches is team effort u cant win single handly in all matches ), sachin had lot of knocks won single handedly,,,please tell me how many mathes kallis single handedly won matches for his team, sachin had 154wkts in part time bowling, if he bowls full time he would take lot wkts than kallis

Posted by Venkat.Sivasankaran on (November 15, 2013, 7:59 GMT)

They say statistics define cricket.. is there a statistic for the quantum of tears shed by Indians today? Farewell, Sachin! :(

Posted by Zaheerahmed on (November 15, 2013, 7:20 GMT)

I have got fed up with all that over-praise of SRT. He was a great player but not as good as Indian media makes him look. Have a look at the following figures and decide who is a true legend. Tendulkar - Test Matches - 15,900 runs @ 53.71 , 115 catches, 46 wickets @ 54. Jacques Kalles 13,140 runs @55.44, 198 catches, 288 wickets @ 32. Sachin ODIs - 18,400 runs @ 44.83, 140 catches and 154 wickets @44, Kallis 11,500 runs @ 45.26, 136 catches and 270 wickets @32. Listening to Indian commentators its look its last test match of cricket and not SRT.

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 7:18 GMT)

The man of steel resembles like SACHIN Means man of Temperament man of techniques man of positive gesture man of loyalty man to be respected because he is the born tough because He is man of all records at everywhere,anywhere,against all nations


Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 7:10 GMT)

the man if steel the man of temperament the man of technique the man of gesture the man with all records

last but foremost man of runs every where,type,country,

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 6:52 GMT)

Wow very nicely written, great article

Posted by joe_antony on (November 15, 2013, 6:50 GMT)

Good article. That was one mad crowd at the Wankede, they might have surely burnt the stands if SRT were to hit another TON, luckily that didn't happen.

Posted by SandeepKhurana on (November 15, 2013, 6:29 GMT)

As the World's GREATEST LEGEND enters into the Wankhede Ground today to play his Last (but not least) Match, We wish that the Time stops here only. We bow down our Head to salute him & give him most deserved respect, support, love and affection and say that "Sachin, We love you, We adore you, We are always with you and We will miss you a lot but you will always be there in our heart, soul and mind till the time We exist, this World Exist and this Universe Exist." Thanks a Ton for gifting us such a Magnificent ERA to live in, admire you and witnessing your live actions. I am sure every Indian and every Cricket Loving person in this world would miss the chanting "Saaaaachin….. Saaaachin.." in the Stadiums. All the Very Best for your last Match and the entire life ahead. We would like to see you as a Coach, Mentor now for our Indian Team.

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 5:08 GMT)

Extraordinary: poetic, evocative, it captures a world, a history, a time, and their movement.

Posted by SuchBagi on (November 15, 2013, 5:06 GMT)

My feelings....rather I will dare to say the cricket followers'... like me who idolize Sachin...these are our feelings...We will miss him...dearly and badly...

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 4:06 GMT)

excellent article ......water in eyes.... will miss u sachin.....!!

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (November 15, 2013, 4:06 GMT)

This article is absolutely brilliant !!!

Posted by ZSBD on (November 15, 2013, 4:01 GMT)

Farewell Sachin ... This unbearable to see you to bat for the last time ... This is hard to accept. A departure of a true sportsman ... a real gentleman. Bangladesh loves you. Love from Tigers.

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 3:59 GMT)

i am getting goosebumps. some spirit has taken over me. good luck SRT

Posted by ProfKumar on (November 15, 2013, 3:59 GMT)

For last 24 years, like many others in the world, I have watched him since his first match in Pakistan... I feel like sad and crying.. this is a very proud moment for all of us, the cricket lovers in the world... A good man, indeed, a gentle person and a hero of cricket is saying bye bye to all of us from the cricket world, as a player though.. we will always miss you playing on grounds... love you my dear, blessings to you and your family... have a wonderful and peaceful life...

Posted by BradmanBestEver on (November 15, 2013, 3:32 GMT)

Very interesting article.............. nicely written

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 3:27 GMT)

Hatss off to you Mr. Sidharth Monga. This is the best article i have ever read which has expressed the emotions of over a million fans almost perfectly. I am speechless. I'll actually be waiting for your next articles.

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 3:27 GMT)

Beautifully written up Mr. Monga. Hats off!

Posted by on (November 15, 2013, 3:25 GMT)

This article must be saved and stored in a place where we can fetch it whenever we want. This truly sums up all the emotions we felt yesterday. Truly, the last passage of play is one we would never forget, and none of us could remember what was happening at other end with Pujara or India. I hope we get to see much larger passage of play like this today. What a sight it would be if Sachin gets a hundred and then goes on to 16000 runs.

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 3:24 GMT)

I enjoyed reading it thoroughly. very well written. thank u sir.

Posted by EVILDON on (November 15, 2013, 2:44 GMT)

Mr. Monga....Beautiful Beautiful write have drawn all emotions in this short story...I have read it thrice and would read it few more times...I missed all this as i was in office...but suddenly i fell ill today....;-)....Still would follow on cricinfo...Though I was praying overnight to God not to let Our God out let it be no ball...let it be something in umpire's eye....anything which let him bat.....Hope he makes most of it....Only SACHIN can compel to draw such emotions....

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 2:40 GMT)

i am unable to sleep yesterday night........... whats gonnna happen.... whats gonna happen.....

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 2:39 GMT)

I am literally crying right now after reading this article..Thanx Siddharth Monga.. Nobody other than a die-hard Indian fan of Sachin Tendulkar will understand what we are going through.. There will be millions of critics but we fans are in billions.. I am 24 years old and was born in 1989 too..but I came to know and admire him since that fateful day when even a sandstorm cudn't stop this little human-storm at Sharjah.. Consecutive centuries against aussies of that era was nothing short of a genius..

Posted by vxttemp on (November 15, 2013, 1:59 GMT)

@7AM IST. My heart is still beating. Couldn't eat, couldn't sleep yesterday night. Took leave from office. Even if I'm at office, will be refreshing cricinfo scorecard. My last wish in cricket and probably my last pray for any sports star - Sachin scores more than 153.

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 1:41 GMT)

@Cyril... this article is for us insane and irrational fans of the God. u miss the point when u say that there were other greats in the past and there will be others in future. But there won't be people praying and crying for the success of one man. The moment is about leaving logic and analysis aside. Just soak it all in and cherish it for a lifetime. Also if one needs two players Kohli and Cook to break his records, it means he was twice as good as any other!

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 1:23 GMT)

Cyril_Knight. You missed the whole point. Sachin is special - not like the cricketers before and, possibly, after. I don't know about Bradman or Lala Amarnath. But I am lucky to have followed Viswanath, Gavaskar and Kapil. They never evoked the same kind of passion. Media and economic boom helped, but the other top-class sports persons of the same era never had the same aura, right? There is something unexplainable in Sachin, as even Ed Smith and Rohit Brijnath have noted on these pages. Perhaps the masses who call him god are right, after all - unlike you who termed Kohli and Cook "great'. They may become greats, but not yet.

PS: As for greats, I can see only two other Indians in the last two decades, apart from Sachin: Dravid and Kumble. And has there been a cricket great in England after Ian Botham?

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 1:12 GMT)

Outstanding article .... To be relished before start of play today.... Must read appetiser for what is to come on Friday

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 1:03 GMT)

if he tries...he can create his own party & be the prime minister of india :)

Posted by   on (November 15, 2013, 0:48 GMT)

What an article .. hats off to u Said .... mind blowing .... speechless

Posted by bhadra on (November 15, 2013, 0:15 GMT)

Human Years - B.C. and A.D. Cricket Years - B.S. and A.S (before sachin and after sachin)

Such was his Magic. His cricket life has written a cricket Bible to all fellow people coming after him to follow. His shots, his behavior off and on the ground, his cricketing tactics, his dedication, his passion, his concentration no one can match it.

Posted by android_user on (November 15, 2013, 0:09 GMT)

good luck dear sachin romesh tendulkar......make a 100 in this last one...

Posted by cricketfan09 on (November 14, 2013, 23:40 GMT)

Sid- awesome write-up. I watched the same sequence that you did, from the time Vijay got out, and I am sure millions did. But, doubt if anyone can describe this any better. "Cheteshwar Pujara's sole purpose in life by now is to take the single", "Tendulkar 12 off 14. India? It doesn't matter", and "Realistic expectations and him don't go together. " You are getting into Andy Zaltzman territory...

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 23:34 GMT)

For the past 18 months or so, I've not left any opportunity to express the view that Sachin should make way for youngsters. Yet when the moment has come, I can't help but feel a bit emotional. For millions of other people born in the same year as Sachin, we've evolved and identified with Tendulkar in one way or the other. A part of you now seems to be fading away. Difficult for me to explain to my kid as to why I have a lump in my throat and moist eyes as I write this comment. Thank you Sachin for being you. God bless!

Posted by Vicky_Kriket on (November 14, 2013, 22:47 GMT)

Well I been following ESPNCRICINFO all my life but it took me so many years to make my login id just to tell how i feel about Sir SR Tendulkar. After reading this article i almost not almost i actually did cry............i still dont want to believe this is Sirs last match.Although i am a die hard fan of Mr Rahul Dravid but Sachin is like in me in our soul......Sir SR Tendulkar will miss u ......All the luck for your future!!!!! :(

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 22:47 GMT)

Dream farewell. Awesome to see Indians are respecting greatest cricketer ever in greatest way ever. SRT is king.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 21:54 GMT)

Felt every emotion of the article.. Great read. And all is because of our tendlya...

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 21:51 GMT)

feel with tears & set back tomorrow emotionally....A brand of cricket

Posted by markatnotts on (November 14, 2013, 21:22 GMT)

@Cyril_Knight, I don't think either Cook or Kohli will ever play long enough at international level to get near Sachin. Obviously Kohli haw more chance but I think as time goes on and less 50 over and Test cricket is played then in will be impossible. Also people are generally retiring earlier and cashing in in the T20 circuit.

Posted by CodandChips on (November 14, 2013, 21:22 GMT)

@Cyril_Knight interesting point on future greats. When I was thinking about which modern cricketers could come close to SRT's greatness, the only names I could think of were Kohli (fantastic ODI record- aged only 24) and Alistair Cook (any doubters don't forget he's the youngest batsman to 7000 test runs).

Ashwin's stats suggest he could be a great allrounder in the longer form. No obvious spin bowler jumped out at me as a challenger to Warne or Murali, but we'll wait and see. Fast bowling wise, the obvious choice is Vernon Philander.

Posted by OttawaRocks on (November 14, 2013, 21:21 GMT)

Sachin's association with India is greater than the US miracle on ice comparison, namely because the latter association does not measure highly enough. Viktor Tikhonov, then coach of the Soviet Union, benched the Soviet Union's best player, goaltender Vladislav Tretiak, in the middle of that game, resulting in the US getting an upset win over the USSR, but "miracle" on ice it was not! A better comparison for Sachin to India would be Che Guevara to Cuba. The occupations are completely different but the fondness and love of the people to their man are equally as strong. Now that would be doing it justice. Thank you Sachin!

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 21:19 GMT)

Poetic, you own it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 20:43 GMT)

This madness probably seems irrational to many. But I think its worth understanding why this is so personal for the fans. In the late 80s India was an aging team, a losing team. There was no fight, they would lose and it was ok. In walks a fearless little kid who strangely unaffected by the attitude of the rest of the team attempts valiantly to drag this team of losers to victory. Suddenly there is hope, suddenly there is some fight. The new fans had arrived, at one condition - 'Sachin you will have to do it all', because the rest were just there to lose. And amazingly Sachin says 'yes!'. He takes it on, all of it, by himself on his young but strong shoulders. Match after match he goes to war for all of us, by himself, while the rest of the team watches. Watching him fight for us have made us so hopelessly loyal to him. He fought for us when no one would. Hence his battle is sometimes more important than the team. I know its irrational but so is Sachin's contribution. Sachin forever!

Posted by ProdigyA on (November 14, 2013, 20:34 GMT)

Pls stop writing such emotional articles, u r making people cry. Saaachin Sachin.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (November 14, 2013, 20:33 GMT)

How long will this parade go on. Make room for the best bastman in the modern era - Jaque Kallis. Better average, doesnt play only on flat tracks and taken over 300 wickets.

Posted by Naresh28 on (November 14, 2013, 20:29 GMT)

@cyril_knight well said. Records will continue to be broken due to new formats and rules.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 20:20 GMT)

My idol All these years the photographs of my room changed from school life to B.Tech and now in M.Tech but the person whose poster remain for every single day is him.And i feel proud that I love him.His humility,persistence,perseverance,benevolence,passion,enthusiasm,gratitude,down to earth attitude,respect for his work....i feel words are really really less to describe him....#ThankYouSachin

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 20:19 GMT)

Sachin you have done cricket proud, your records will stand for years, this is a very emotional time cricket followers. You will always be remembered by cricket followers forever. It would be a blessing to see you end with a century, if this happens there will be pandemonium in the stadium.

Posted by Rohit... on (November 14, 2013, 20:18 GMT)

The writer was writing my feelings... Particularly at the end " Pujara is 34 off 49, and has played some pretty decent shots, but no one has noticed. He could have streaked, and no one would have noticed.".... Certainly I wouldn't have cared unless there was a hint that India is collapsing at the other end.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 20:15 GMT)

Born in 1990, as billions of cricket fans are right now, at 23 my life so far has been shorter than this man's international career. We haven't known a life, a world without Sachin Tendulkar playing (international cricket). However far-disconnected it may be, but a part of our life after this match will definitely be different.

On a more personal note, since I've grown up as a boy, I've never cried in front of famiily or friends, regardless of the density of the situation I've managed to control the emotions. But I got a feeling I won't be able to control them when his retirement speech takes place. Things may change , after all, for all the people under 24 years of age, the world is going to be an uknown after this match - one in which SRT doesn't play (international) cricket.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 20:13 GMT)

How did you manage for more than 24 years..none of our good things last for max 5 years or so....yeah..there have been stuff, more like burden..but even they don't last 24 long years. & look at you...all through..that good!!! I got are like TRUE LOVE..FIRST LOVE etc that endlessly remains strong. Within will always remain STRONG!

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 20:12 GMT)

There is no interest left in watching cricket after the GOD retires..i love you sachin..

Posted by Cyril_Knight on (November 14, 2013, 20:02 GMT)

What's great about cricket, and you youngsters need to remember, is that every period has great heroes. Sachin's career has coincided with a media boom in India and the explosion of cricket as entertainment, but he is not the first and will not be the last great player.

Cricket is great at recognising achievements because it is a game of respect and gentlemanly conduct. Sachin will be remembered most fondly. Now we can focus on new greats, Kohli and Cook are well on their ways to eclipsing even this great man's records.

Let's enjoy Sachin's last hurrah and wish him a peaceful retirement, but above all let us wish that cricket continues to provide us with great men to admire.

Posted by borninthetimeofSRT on (November 14, 2013, 19:56 GMT)

Its like flipping back the pages of greatest history of Cricket and living in its moment. Our generation has only heard of legacies of great men like Gandhi, JFK, Stalin, Mohammed Ali. But here we have our own moment in history of which the future generation will talk about and wonder what it would have been like - a sportsman to stop a nation, stop heart beats and stop time while he was moving. We are going sepia in the present. Its ironic that he is called the Little Master. He is huge, is the greatest of them all. Take a bow! There is just one and there will be no other. SALUTE TO SRT!

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (November 14, 2013, 19:53 GMT)

Wow!! That's brought me goosebumps.

That's some career for u... He's not done yet.

Posted by nitish29 on (November 14, 2013, 19:47 GMT)

One of the best articles I have read in a long time.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:45 GMT)

excellent article....felt every emotion !!!

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 19:37 GMT)

Sid, great article....what a way to describe that 5 minutes when he came on field...And Sachin is a religion which all cricket fans follow. Will Miss Him

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:26 GMT)

And before reading the comments, I thought I was the only one who almost cried :)


Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:26 GMT)

A moment, i forgot to key in the username and password for my official email address and kept reading the article and comments, without unaware my emails were not getting downloaded, SUCH IS THE STORY OF SACHIN, more words have written about him. True is the sentence, LEGENDS ARE BORN & THEY WERE NEVER MADE...

Posted by AbhinayBhoje on (November 14, 2013, 19:22 GMT)

Loved the article!! Was reliving all the moments with heavy heart and teary eyes..over to Sachin again..for one more time...

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 19:11 GMT)

walks in the legend the crowd at their feet a miss and a hit increase the heartbeat in attack or defence there is all confidence the master remains not out amid resistance so stout for telling the tale as you did wake up sid wake up sid.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:09 GMT)

I know how I am feeling and how everyone is feeling, but I want to know how he must be feeling.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:07 GMT)

this made me broke into tears.....OMG!!!!How to imagine this moment........SACHINNNNNN...SACHINNNNNN>>>>>>>>>>

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 19:02 GMT)

Nostalgic, almost made me cry!!

Posted by _CricketIndia on (November 14, 2013, 19:01 GMT)

Sachin ...Sachiiiiiiiinnnnnnnn

Posted by AnkushDeshmukh on (November 14, 2013, 18:56 GMT)

i had tears in my eyes a few moments after the straight drive thinking this is my idol and the last few epic moments on the field i get to see!!! Sachin GOD Tendulkar will be missed very badly!!! Hail Sachin!!

Posted by Lotr3 on (November 14, 2013, 18:49 GMT)

We should all be grateful that we are a part of this historic event. There will never be an occassion like this for another 5000 years!!! Let's soak it in and ejnoy the scenes. Be happy for Sachin.

Posted by crikkfan on (November 14, 2013, 18:48 GMT)

Is it me or anyone get goosepimples reading this ..

Posted by Ganesh81 on (November 14, 2013, 18:39 GMT)

continuation........Hitting Akhtar in SA 2003....Dismissing Warne....Countering Murali in his own backyard.....Paddle Sweeps, Staright Drives...Shots over thirdman...oh Sachin will miss you badly.....

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 18:30 GMT)

Awesome article Siddharth. "Story of Sachin's life. Realistic expectations and him dont go together." You nailed it. Sachin was the only hope left in Indian cricket. Thank God, we lived in times of Sachin Tendulkar.

Posted by espncricinfomobile on (November 14, 2013, 18:28 GMT)

Already lot being said and infinite emotions and memories being shared about the true legend Sachin Tendulkar, one little thing that the game and its viewers will miss is, the name "S Tendulkar" at number 4, whenever they see the indian scorecard. This position has been there for eternity, i really dont know how can one fill up that place! The number 4 position should permanently be frozen by the name Sachin Tendulkar. SRT, the name says it all. I am almost in tears while writing this. Sachin, The God, The ultimate human, we will miss you which we cannot even express. Fare Thee Well, Sachin! Someone rightly said, now cricket will only be played by humans! Hail Sachin!

Posted by kalyanbk on (November 14, 2013, 18:27 GMT)

Cheteshwar Pujara's sole purpose in life by now is to take the single.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 18:26 GMT)



Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 18:02 GMT)

I am no fan of Indian cricket or the way their players behave in the field. But Sachin I salute you for your outstanding contribution to the game and for being a great ambassador for your country on and off the field. It is truly a privilege to have seen you bat in my lifetime and I can tell my grand children that I saw the battle between Sachin and Murali in the field. Waddaplaya...The way you carried a burden of Indian cricket for so many years is truly outstanding. You truly are a legend of the game.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:53 GMT)

While reading the article,you feel like u r in stadium watching him live.......Very well articulated..............missed d straight drive.........

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:48 GMT)


Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:47 GMT)

Siddharth, you have made us relive all moments again...thanks for the brilliant article. Sachin means so much to us and with his last test, I feel I will be leaving some part of my life behind...

Posted by devil_in_details on (November 14, 2013, 17:47 GMT)

Of all the things, even more than the Wankhede crowd's chanting, what stood out in my mind is the guard of honour by the Windies players for Sachin. It was something that touched heart and reminded why cricket is a gentlemen's game. I hope the Indian team follows this example in the future should they play the last game of any future opposition great. Thanks Windies for this grand gesture!

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:40 GMT)

Sidh, well articulated and lively write up.It seems you had been taking us with the running commentry.Heart touching. Only a man of big heart can praise someone like this.We love Sachine even when he plays against us(Bangladesh).He has united all the cricket lovers of the earth.LONG LIVE SACHIN.

Posted by rohan024 on (November 14, 2013, 17:39 GMT)

Fairly accurate article of the proceedings with one vital detail missing. Before SRT stepped in, the only chanting you could hear in the crowd was of "Ishant Ishant" whenever Ishant Sharma came on ground with drinks.

Posted by ASHISH_RN on (November 14, 2013, 17:29 GMT)

Excellent Article.. enjoyed every bit of it. Sachiinnn Sachiinnnn ... we love you.

Posted by Ganesh81 on (November 14, 2013, 17:21 GMT)

Phew!!! Finally the moment has come…Sachin's last test….dont know what to write because most people have already mentioned a lot about him….I have nothing new to add…..miss those moments … today while watching him bat live I went back 20 years in my life and relived every moment of my life was nostalgic...relived my school days from the time he opened for Inida in 1994 to that staggering 160 add he hit against SA in 1997 (still remember what I did at that at that time only because of SRT's knocks).....then my college lfe with the knocks that he hit in Sharjah in 1998, Chepauk 1998, 40 odd runs in Dhaka 1998, 130 odd with the back pain against Pak..First reaction to sledging by Mcgrath in 2000, Century in Dark in England in 2002, World Cup Final disappointment in 2003....then my Professional life since 2003...248 at SCG...194 against Pak...couple of 90's in Eng ODI......Hundreds in OZ....Pulled six against Caddick ....smashing Olanga,Kasprowicsz in Sharjah, Hitting Akhtar in SA

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 17:19 GMT)

I hope indian team collapses tomorrow except the master Sachin Tendulkar... He bats long enough with the tail to complete the 16K runs and a double century and the Indian batting gets bundled up soon after. Then Gayle-The destroyer we all know turns up in the second innings and plays a whirlwind innings to somehow help West Indies gain a lead of at least about 50-100 runs. I want to see the legend bat one more time.... Eventhough I am big fan of Dhoni but what a stupid decision(i think this is the first time I criticised his decision making) to bowl first. Decision to bat first would have almost given two chances to Sachin to wield his art, but now that opportunity is almost lost, thanks to Dhoni... At least lets hope, somehow West Indies put up some fight in the second innings and let us cherish the batting of our Tendlya one more time... May Sachin bat for us one more time...

Posted by RKB21 on (November 14, 2013, 17:16 GMT)

Very well written article; it captures the emotions of a billion strong people!!!

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 17:16 GMT)

Mate, brilliant article for all Sachin and Cricket lovers all over the world!! It felt like I am sitting there watching Sach bat live!!! Really awesome!!

Posted by Unmesh_cric on (November 14, 2013, 17:10 GMT)

What an amazing description of the events! I didn't watch the match yesterday, but reading the article made me hold my breath! I can't wait to watch Tendulkar bat tomorrow.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:06 GMT)

I was reading everything on Cricinfo and was imagining and this article concludes my day

Posted by Sachin_veer on (November 14, 2013, 17:04 GMT)

This article is the best i have read today and its heart touching.. Sachiiinnnnnn Sachiiiinnnnnn.. We love u. You cant separate Sachin from cricket. He will continue to contribute in any possible way cos its his dedication and passion towards this game.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 17:03 GMT)

I was born in 1989..cant say had my interest in cricket that early but saw him in 1996 world cup and then never stop watching SACHIN and i watched the whole match and accompanying me were my father who watch cricket occasionally and my mother who never watches it...SUCH IS THE POWER OF THE CRICKETING GOD called as SACHIN TENDULKAR...tomorrow there is guarantee sachin will play as well as he did today but one thing is for sure..i m gonna cherish every moment of it and with me will be the whole nation having this feeling...

Posted by kunz4u on (November 14, 2013, 17:03 GMT)

Extremely proud to say...... "I was there"

Posted by KrupeshPatel on (November 14, 2013, 17:01 GMT)

Excellent Article. Hats off Sidharth; Mind Blowing Direction of 1st days play; Picture Perfect description of the Sachin's Inning. While reading it feels actually ur in the middle watching it as film(dream). Praying for sachin century tomorrow......... Best of luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:59 GMT)

Unfortunately, there are few people calling him greedy and selfish,even on this day. As a staunch Sachin fan , I am not angry at these people but can only pity on them.It reflects their small and negative mentality.Interestingly, I had found a strong correlation between their behavior and their thinking. They generally come out as frustrated,angry with themselves and of generally pessimistic nature. I can only wish for them and for Sachin, I am grateful to god that I was born in this generation. For me also, its a retirement from sports now.

Posted by No_Sachin_No_Cricket on (November 14, 2013, 16:59 GMT)

I was at Wankhede today and this article exactly describes to minute details as to what we were doing and feeling at each precise moment.... hats off... very well written article... reading it felt like re-living the moments :)

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:53 GMT)

you missed mentioning THAT straight drive....yes it was only off Sammy, indeed it was a half volley....but THAT drive made it all worth it, didnt it?

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:51 GMT)

Sid, superb article!I could feel the Sach-wave rushing on my face!

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 16:50 GMT)

Great article Siddharth.... life as we know it would not be the same after this match....the man who lived every 90s Indian teenager's dream wont play anymore....Game over fellas...enjoy this and go wont happen again!

Posted by Nich1987 on (November 14, 2013, 16:48 GMT)

very well written...kudoss..

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:46 GMT)

Someone can hate India, but if someone hate Sachin Tendulkar, probably he would not know what cricket is.........salute Sachin Romesh Tendulkar

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 16:44 GMT)

A most fantabulous article! Well articulated! Thank you for taking me to the stadium on day 1. I felt as though I was with the spectators!

Posted by sanjayleo on (November 14, 2013, 16:41 GMT)

Thank you Sachin for Uniting India ..

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 16:35 GMT)

sachin I love u will lose interest in cricket without u.....

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:35 GMT)

Sachin right until his last match remains the paragon of excellence and a classy cricket player.

Thank you for your service to the game Sachin, and God bless you.

Posted by EverybodylovesSachin on (November 14, 2013, 16:23 GMT)

Sachin you are not going to get farewell from our hearts...and you will be still playing and be remembered in our memories..

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 16:21 GMT)

such beautifully written emotional article

Posted by arunsawant on (November 14, 2013, 16:15 GMT)

extremely well written.......well i was just checking the scores for his first ranji trophy match and irani trophy match where he scored a century.......hope he gets one tommorrow........

Posted by YogifromNY on (November 14, 2013, 16:13 GMT)

Siddharth - superb article, like the one you co-wrote with Atul Karhadkar y'day. Thank you for writing so eloquently and with emotion about the great man Tendulkar. I have been one of his countless fans for years. Sure, he should have retired after the World Cup, on a high like Gavaskar did, rather than dragging on like Kapil (and so many other sportsmen) did. But he is an undeniable great. Salutations and best wishes, Sachin. We will miss you for sure. Cricket will definitely be the poorer for your retirement, though I hope you will continue as a mentor, guide and voice of graciousness in the increasingly commercial and crass sphere of cricket today! God bless you and your family.

Posted by Ggupta11 on (November 14, 2013, 16:12 GMT)

Excellent article !!!! Couldn't watch the match today but can feel the entire SRT innings through this article !!!!

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 16:03 GMT)

There is a movie called 'Miracle' - about the miraculous win of US Ice Hockey team over then dominant Soviet Union in 1980 inter Olympics. It is touted the best sports movie of all time. But one has to see the first 10 minutes of credit rolling to understand the emotion behind the movie. The Cold War, the shadow of Armageddon, the turbulent 70's in US.. then came this young team who inspired hope, positivism, and above all joy of sports and in life - for an entire nation.

For us, Indians, growing up in 90's, that role was fulfilled by this man. That's why he is called God, not because he is God of numbers or records but he is giver - of joy, hope, and faith.

Posted by RanjithShettyJordan on (November 14, 2013, 15:59 GMT)

Oh my dear sachin, there is no words to explain how i miss you. There is no interest left in me to watch cricket. Grown with you as a fan of you. Today i am very sad and while reading all the articles tears are rolling out of my eyes.I had many sad moments in my life, but today is the that day , there is no word to explain my sadness. You are the only person who gave happiness to me for last 24 years, when i saw you i forget to reading, ready to get beating from parents and accept the bad marks in the exams., but nothing stopped me watching you bat. Explaining to other who are watching with me about the technique and balance whatever i know about cricket nonstop like a commentator. for your every defence and shots i had explanation to do. Tomorrow is a black day in my life. I always want you to bat, but once you come to crease i feel,i am restless and i can't do anything .Wish you r not out tommorow whole day and make one more happiest day ever in this life.Thank u for giving so much.

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 15:53 GMT)

emotional and very well written !!!

Posted by strikeforce2003 on (November 14, 2013, 15:49 GMT)

Very well written..It is an emotional farewell to a great cricketing icon of India and the World. The West Indians lining up to greet SRT as he walked into bat, spoke volumes in not just the awe, more so the occasion in paying tribute to the cricketer admired by all. It's rare in sports or human history, where a personality is welcomed and admired by all, SRT is one such. He has conducted himself remarkably well bit on or off the playing arena, he has truly earned that regard, that he so richly deserves.

Posted by android_user on (November 14, 2013, 15:39 GMT)

Sachin is a legend people will remember him for ever

Posted by   on (November 14, 2013, 15:32 GMT)

I soo totally agree. After reading this post, I get to relive those wonderful moments again. yes I was there and Im lucky to have experienced that SRT is still a mumbai boy. Our boy. Its all about him. Someone asked me if there is anything that I want to trade for tomorrow's ticket. You know the answer. A million will skip beats tomorrow. Cricket will not be the same without this superhuman. Thanks for all the tears, joys, wishes & prays. As I write this, i still remember how my entire family (my mother then was least interested in cric.) and how we all prayed to god for the semi final sharjah match when Warne bowled to him for the first 2 overs. What happens after that, is a history. :)

Posted by Sri_Harsha9 on (November 14, 2013, 15:22 GMT)

Awesome. When he came out to bat, goosebumps just watching on TV. I could imagine how big atmosphere was in the stadium. Same again while reading this article. The one man who gave joy to the entire nation and continues to give one last time. #thankyousachin

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