Sachin Tendulkar

'The only challenge he has is to beat himself'

Team-mates and opponents alike applaud Tendulkar's incredible achievement

ESPNcricinfo staff

December 20, 2010

Comments: 22 | Text size: A | A

Sachin Tendulkar becomes the first man to score 50 Test centuries, South Africa v India, 1st Test, Centurion, 4th day, December 19, 2010
Sachin Tendulkar has left all other batsmen far behind © Associated Press
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Players/Officials: Sachin Tendulkar
Series/Tournaments: India tour of South Africa
Teams: India

"For him, a Test match begins two days earlier, preparing for it. He wants to face the maximum number of balls at the nets. You will not see him play a loose shot at the nets."
Gary Kirsten, India's coach, praises Tendulkar's work ethic

"The only challenge he has is to beat himself every time he walks out there because he has done almost everything."
There's little left for Tendulkar to achieve, says Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara

"When we used to play, we thought no one can break Sunil Gavaskar's record. No one could think about 50 Test centuries at that time. This is certainly a big knock under the circumstances, better than the 200s and 300s."
Kapil Dev, the former India captain, sizes up the feat

"There wouldn't be one side in the world that wouldn't want Sachin as their first wicket, pointing their ship toward victory."
Former Australia opener Matthew Hayden presents the opposition's point of view

"I try to watch the matches in which he is playing because I have not seen anyone gifted with such natural technical batting excellence, which he has combined with his hard work and commitment. He is indeed a phenomena and a role model for every young batsman."
Hanif Mohammad, the former Pakistan batsman, admires Tendulkar's perseverance

"I've never imagined that someone can go this level and play for more than 20 years. It's an incredible feat."
Graeme Pollock is impressed by Tendulkar's longevity

"I'd like to ask him just how he has managed to work so hard to stay at the top for so long and what advice he'd give other sportsmen."
The fastest man on earth, Usain Bolt, is a fan

"If I'm a cricketer, it's because of Sachin Tendulkar. Else, I would have never picked up a bat. He's the reason behind me playing cricket."
Virender Sehwag gives us another reason to be thankful for Tendulkar

"It was clear to us even when he walked out to bat in that Test as a teenager that he had talent. The fact that he has been around for 21 years and done justice to that god-gifted talent in both forms of the game is an achievement any cricketer would be proud of."
Former Pakistan captain Javed Miandad appreciates Tendulkar's consistency

"When I first bowled to Sachin Tendulkar, I almost felt sorry for this small-built 16-year-old, who looked 14."
Imran Khan, the former Pakistan captain, on the brief while he felt bad for Tendulkar before feeling the same for the bowlers he was batting against

"... shut your eyes, blank out the noise and whisper gently, '50 Test centuries'. Enjoy the way it slips off your tongue and ask yourself if you had ever considered it possible. I hadn't. A decade ago I wrote, 'Would I be considered a madman if I forced the word "fifty" from my lips!'"
Commentator and television presenter Harsha Bhogle savours the moment

"How do you describe such a man? Ninety-six international centuries, fifty of them in Tests all over the world, it's fantastic."
Tendulkar's feats do the impossible: leave Bishan Bedi at a loss for words

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (December 22, 2010, 10:14 GMT)

@diehard-5, tell me any of the match winning knocks of sehwag.His third innings and fourth innings record is too pathetic to mention.For his first innings exploit.sachin has got at least 25 better centuries than sehwag. Also who made 36 in first innings when sehwag quacked on duck.in second innings who made 111,you or sehwag.Without sachin playing 111 and staying there dhoni could have not even tocuhed 20.

Posted by onkar_Kulkarni on (December 21, 2010, 14:16 GMT)

Continued from previous comment

The moral of this story is that Sachin had no choice but to trust in his partners initially and the only way to do that was by giving them a chance to face the bowling attack.

Posted by   on (December 21, 2010, 11:16 GMT)

many congratulations to sachin on the 50th ton. centurion was a great opportunity for him to do what mike hussey did against pakistan at sydney. aus were heading for an innings defeat when huss turned things around. tendulkar has yet to play that kind of an innings. consistency, correctness and watchfulness are his strengths and these are what have held him in good stead for 20 years. if he applied to the team as much as a steve waugh, allan border, adam gilchrist, brian lara or hansie cronje did, he wouldnt have had the kind of record he does now. multan of 2004 is a classic example. sydney 2004 is another. his earnestness to not get out caught behind the wicket at sydney saw us bat on the third day too costing us valuable time to bowl aus out twice, and the series. congrats anyway, may you score a hundred test centuries and i will consider myself lucky to see one of those serving the teams cause.

Posted by diehard-5 on (December 21, 2010, 11:11 GMT)

I am amazed by many people here saying that 'Indian batting is still dependent on Tendulkar' even after such tremendous match-winning/saving performances from other Indian players like Dravid, Ganguly, Laxman, Dhoni, Zaheer and especially Sehwag, which resulted in our Number 1 status in Test rankings. Actually, it is the Tendulkar who had let down the team on innumerable occasions though he had this 'great batsman' tag wrapped around his neck like a dog's collar.

In fact, for the kind information of many readers here, it was M.S.Dhoni who gave the momentum and semblance of respect to Indian batting on the 4th day with his stupendous 90, NOT TENDULKAR. Tendulkar's was a good innings, no doubt, but it's by no means an exceptional one as should be the case with anyone supposed to be the champion bat. He mostly played second fiddle to Dhoni for most of their partnership instead of playing the kind of shots Dhoni played all along.

Posted by Nadeem1976 on (December 21, 2010, 5:13 GMT)

I give you one more reason. The reason as Pakistani to stop hating Indian batsmen is Sachin. I cannot stop my tounge to say good things about Sachin therefore i have started appreciating Indian batsmen more. No word for his records , they are worth millions. What a player.

Posted by jupiterlaw on (December 21, 2010, 1:12 GMT)

The way I see it is that until he gets the test batting record, he stands in Lara's shadow regardless to the number of centuries that he might make. I believe that Sachin will be far more eager to exchange records with Lara than Lara with him.

Posted by vimalkm on (December 20, 2010, 23:33 GMT)

ok for all the critics who say sachin should have taken more of the strike..i understand that you guys feel India could have saved there face by avoiding innings defeat.BUT has one one of you played professional cricket?? there is a team meeting before start of play....clearly the message would have been to play positive..if the match has to be saved they had to bat out 70 odd overs there is no way sachin could have batted every single ball in that. Dhoni and sachin said the more they were in the middle became easier to play, which meant the TAIL ENDERS HAD TO FACE the bowling. YES even i wanted INDIA to save an innings defeat but that;s NOT SACHINS FAULT! AND YES..if he was in his 90's he would have taken the strike more wont you? if you know you gonna lose might as well get a 100 there is nothing wrong in that....he deserved it he had played hard for 2 sessions and he wanted that century and it was tribute to his dad as it was his bday the day before!give the man some respect please.

Posted by Howazzatt on (December 20, 2010, 20:21 GMT)

For all SRTs achievements and to come it should reflect on his name literarily. I would suggest the spelling of Sachin Tendulkar to be changed, 50 test hundred and for the 50 ODI hundred to come and for being the first batter to score double ton in ODI, here I propose the spelling 5ACHIN TTENDULKAR. S in Sachin should be replaced by no 5 denoting 50 test hundred and Tendulkar should be spell with double TT for double hundred he scored. Any suggestions…

Posted by   on (December 20, 2010, 18:00 GMT)

Mr "East_West".....as sachin quotes..."I always encourage player at the other end to bat...even tailenders" and probabily thats why even harbhajan has scored consecutive test centuries and he devotes these centuries to sachin.....anyways you won't be able to understand what great mind thinks

Posted by Vilander on (December 20, 2010, 17:15 GMT)

Guys we all need to get this, it was meek to expose the tail. after the brave first innings and awesome 4th day, why ? why such a meek surrender on day 5? he should have gone down fighting like a champion. His numbers are so huge that they have become meaningless as no one is going to catchup in any case, he has to bat like a champion,never giving up, the way he batted yesterday, 5 bouncers in an over from Steyn not one could he hook..but he played on, but today was meek.

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