The Bow-Down-to-Sachin Post!

Tournament: Asia Cup
Venue: Sharjah, UAE
Date: April 9th, 1995

The Men in Blue were playing Sri Lanka…while I was
shaadi shopping for my mamu’s wedding.

Shaadi shopping is never fun when you’re thirteen. In fact, when you’d much rather be out playing dog-and-the-bone with your building friends, it is by far one of the most exasperating situations. With a grouchy face, I dragged myself around Bombay city trying to understand why a thirteen-year-old needed to come shopping for a wedding especially since all my clothes were already bought. But as we traveled from store to store, I found myself rather intrigued by the lack of productivity that was occurring at these dhukans. Quickly, I realized that sari shop attendants were swamped around television sets. It was only when a customer walked in that they forcefully diverted their attention to serving you. As my mother tried what was easily her 100th sari, I found myself curious. “What’s going on?” I remember asking my father, who was equally as bored but refused to let it be shown on his face. “Cricket,” my father said, “Cricket is happening.” With zero knowledge, I decided I’d take a peek at this sport. And at that very minute, it really happened. Sachin Tendulkar walked onto the field and the rest, as they say, is history.

My introduction to cricket was because of a bored experience, but it became a passion because of apna Master Blaster. It took me time to grasp the sport one hundred percent but this particular game is etched in my mind because of the 10dulkar. I vividly remember him walking out to the wicket and while the sari shopwallahs explained to Baby Roshni how the game worked, Sachin was playing an incredible knock. They cheered at every boundary he hit and while I dashed in and out of stores realizing that Sachin would hit a century, which I learned was a huge deal. And as my mother tried on her last sari, which she did buy praise the lord, Sachin, who was at 99 at the previous store, scored his 100th run. For the first time, I saw myself looking at this man in complete awe. But it didn’t end there, Tendlya went to finish off the game, 125 not out.

Not only did I become a fanatic, from that day on, but perhaps one of Sach’s biggest fans. And I have no qualms in admitting that I am biased towards Tendulkar. Irrespective of how many runs he scores, he does it the best. Out on 5? Best of the 5 runs in the game, I say. Whenever I find myself at loggerheads with non-India team players, I find myself jutting out Sachin’s name and silence falls upon the argument. Sachin always wins. Sachin always rocks. Sachin always gets the loudest roars and cheers.

It’s not just his game which I simply can’t get enough of. Yes, he hits those amazing cover drives which make you sigh as you view perfection. But as a Sachin fan, it’s the experience of watching the maestro hit a 100. At 99, your heart beats at a pace that is unfathomable. But watching him raise his bat as he runs the 100th run, peace falls over you. You have witnessed a piece of art, the finest.

It’s the man’s birthday on April 24th, and I have no words to explain how much I simply adore him. It’s respect to the maximum, devotion of the utmost. And so on the occasion of his 38th birthday, I just want to bow in front of the man who has taught me that ainvayi people are successful but the sachi (truly) most successful ones are those who are grounded and humble. Those who follow their dreams with a true heart and those who display passion in all they do. I salute you, oh great one. The Master, the Blaster, the God, the Slashin, 10dulkar, we love you. Tum jeeyo hazaaron saal, yeh meri hai arzoo. Happy Birthday to you!

1 comment:

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