Today he has completed 50 test centuries. The most by any human in cricketing history (he held that one for quite some time now, since his 36th hundred). He has been playing the game for past 20 years and his lack luster years have yielded as many runs as an average cricketer hopes to get in the entire year as a best case. He started as an explosive teenager who showed the signs of his greatness within the first few test matches and grew in to a mature risk less human being with more than a billion followers all over the world.
He has scored truck loads of runs over the period of time but he still remains the same person shy, very modest, very eager to learn and a committed INDIAN! He does not speak much about his charitable work, he does not want media attention and yet he gets almost all of it. In a not shell a simple and down to earth human being. Yet, despite of all these very human like qualities he is one of the very few people in India who can bring the entire country together. I have seen during my growing up years many groups of people (men and women alike) glued to the TV to see him play. The TV showrooms in India have to have at least one TV showing the match for the collective viewing of kids who don’t want to miss their own batting but want to see Sachin bat, the common man walking on the street going through his daily chores and wants to keep a tab on Sachin’s score, for the “gali ke munde” and of course for the staff of the store who would otherwise collectively fall sick and take a leave. I am sure it adds to very few people walking in to the store to buy something. When he says “Mumbai is for all Indians” the entire country roars in agreement, the politicians have to retract their statements and issue clarifications. When he gets out short of a century it becomes a topic of discussion for the entire country for at least that evening and next morning. When he scores one, we can not stop watching the highlights (and fanatics watch the replay of entire match) over and over again. When he is injured we doubt, if India will play well (this use to be the case for quite some time in the 90′s and early 2000′s) in the bilateral series. We Indians will request a television at work to see matches and the corporates (money hungry?) oblige in order to keep people from taking half day or other ad-hoc short leaves. When was the last time 1/5th of humanity acted like this? When was it that Indians despite of their varied faiths (which in most cases become their undoing) pray in unison for that one shot from the master that will seal that win, will complete that arduous hundred, that majestic fifty, that artistic double ton and that patient 150?
More importantly, his career tells everyone how ever talented you are it needs extreme hard work, a resolute mind and an undying “passionate love” for what you do, that helps you in achieving every thing you want in your life. That man’s sheer conviction to getting up every day and putting his body through that grueling workouts is something that merits nothing less than a standing ovation from everyone (a friend or a foe). He was ruled out by the cricketing greats after his injuries saying “end of his career is near”. I have only seen him improve the records over time. That end although inevitable is not in sight just yet. The Steyns and Morkels of the world who wants are raring to go at him know that, even if they get the stick they get it from one of the greats. He was plagued with back problems which forced him to cut on those gorgeous pull and hook shots, he did it. He worked on his back and got back running. People said he has been “worked out” by bowling him certain balls and making him play certain shots, he worked hard and cut those shots and invented some that baffled the people who had “worked him out”. He worked on his skills to take on one of the game’s magician bowlers (Shane Warne) and tore apart that scathing Ozie attack that was feared in the entire world. All through his life he worked hard at improving and has enjoyed what he does. As a side effect there are a billion people who love watching him take on those challenges thrown at him. They feel sad if he fails to solve that challenge the first time around and they eagerly follow him the next time to see how he overcomes that challenge. They draw hope from that attitude in their own life, they draw the strength to overcome their own problem. They remember the way he worked hard on solving the problem to solve their own problems. What else do the mythical legends tell you? What else does the holy books tell you? They tell you the same story, work harder at the problems and you can solve them. It is the same story of Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. He may not have done all this with exactly that on his mind but one may argue the same about the myths and legends. …
It is hence, that we Indians call Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, the GOD!