Sachin Tendulkar: sustaining brilliance

On Sunday, Sachin Tendulkar became the first player in the history of cricket to score 50 Test centuries. His latest hundred came under severe pressure, with his team on the brink of losing the first Test match against South Africa in Centurion. Tendulkar batted for five hours to reach 107 runs, taking his total tally of runs in Test cricket to 14,509 runs. With the team crumbling around him, Tendulkar was unable, despite his heroics, to save the match for his country.

Sachin Tendulkar made his Test debut in 1989 as a 16-year-old against Pakistan in Karachi. Tendulkar, while facing a deadly bowling attack in the form of Imran Khan, Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis was struck numerous times on the body. But his passion for the game was shown after Waqar Younis struck him on the mouth and Sachin decided to continue batting in a blood-soaked shirt. He truly announced his arrival to the world when he scored his first Test century in a match-saving innings at Old Trafford at the tender age of 17. Sachin Tendulkar has been able to score in all parts of the world and in all conditions. Unlike most modern batsmen, he does not play any predetermined shots, but rather plays every ball on merit. There is no apparent chink in his armour. His concentration is second to none. The two features that set him apart from all other players is his selflessness for the team and his never-ending hunger to score more runs.

With such a prolific record in Test cricket comes the comparison to the greatest batsman of all time, Don Bradman. Sir Don Bradman managed to play 52 matches and only scored 29 centuries compared to Tendulkar. However, Sir Bradman had an average of 99.94 in Test cricket during his career between 1928-1948. Also during this time, travel would take longer, far less cricket was played and in between World War II interrupted his career. Only God knows what Sir Don Bradman would have achieved if he plied his trade today.In the ever-changing nature of cricket because of increasing commercialisation, Sachin Tendulkar is a beacon of greatness representing the true spirit of the sport. He is a pleasure to watch for cricket purists. We would like to congratulate him on this milestone and wish him the best for the future – Dailytimes