Sunday, November 10, 2013

India Unites

Source @ Google Images

It was the winters of 1989 when a young boy of 16 years looking just about 14 was selected for his first international tour and on 15th November, 1989 the game was gifted one of its best ambassadors and the one who went on to make the colonial game a world class sport followed and adored by billions around the globe.
Right from the time the young wonder boy of India burst onto the international scene there was no looking back. As he played the game and rose through the rank records kept tumbling and many new once were established with every passing match.

How does one sum up an illustrated career spanned over two and a half decades which is illuminated with numerous records and achievements on the cricket field apart from the national honours, Arjuna Award, by the Government of India in recognition of his outstanding achievement in sports, 1994, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, India's highest honour given for achievement in sports, 1997–98, Padma Shri, India's fourth highest civilian award, 1999, Maharashtra Bhushan Award, Maharashtra State's highest Civilian Award in 2001 and Padma Vibhushan, India's second highest civilian award in 2008.

There are many firsts in life and so are many lasts too. One of the many lasts for this Proud Indian, the great Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, the Ranji Trophy - Group A, Haryana v Mumbai Match, 2013 was his last Ranji Match.

As they say come the hour comes the man, I tried to sum up the last day of the match in my status updates on facebook during and after the match.
Status One:
“In walks the Master...he has been doing this all his life and yet again in his last innings for Mumbai...he will be bailing out the team from nowhere...
Mumbai in tatters, last man standing, chasing a daunting target on a supergreen pitch, last innings of a test, one last time...a script written by GOD for the GOD!!!
Go Master Go!!!”
Status Two:
“Even if Ind Vs. Aus Match is today at 9 AM and say IND is batting, I bet most of the Indians all around the world would be watching the Ranji match at Lahli - courtesy one man #SRT

An appeal against Sachin for LBW
Status Three:
“even if that was out the Umpires heart would have been in his mouth to have uttered that words 'that's out' - he would have been history and never would have seen a cricket filed ever again in his life”

One more appeal
Status Four:
“even after 24 long years people enquiring about the cricket match still ask the same Sachin still playing and I'm sure even today if he gets out 70% of the stadium will be empty and almost 95% of television sets and online following will be shut within minutes of his wicket #SRT
Status Five:
“and the Master has done it all over again what he has been doing for last 24 years...bailed out the team from nowhere...singing off on high...Mumbai Wins #SRT #Mumbai #Ranji
Status Six:
“What an emphatic way to sign off they are all queuing up to shake his hand, team-mates and rivals alike and he has been chaired off the field by the team physio, Careful, doc, he has two more Tests to go”

I had rescheduled my work so that I could watch the final day and the master at work for one last time in the domestic circuit. When usually I am away at work or travelling I follow the matches many online sites and just curious about what people had to say about the man’s last inning I tuned in online while watching the match on television and actually revisited and relived my growing years which was synonyms with Sachin’s rise in the game.

Contemporaries or otherwise, Tendulkar is one on few sports stars for whom people will clamour, pay and make sacrifices to watch him play, regardless of their national identity. This is what some of them from all around the world had to say on his last two days of that match.

Mumbai was one down, 3rd day of the Match
Nitin: "In Sachin's last match at Kotla against the Aussies in March I was part of the crowd that wanted Kohli to get out just to get a glimpse of Sachin for one more time. We literally booed Virat that day. I am imagining similar scenes in Lahli right now with the crowd shouting for Rahane or Pawar to get out."

Aby: "For the first time in my 25 yrs of life, I am following a ranji match, thts what sachin does to u"

Kedar: "For the fist time in my life I am following Ranji cricket match ball by ball..i dont even know how Mumbai has fared this season..I am sure that will be case with most of my fans out here....I wish Sachin makes good score to prevail Mumbai in this match !"

Anil: "I am awake here in Philly at 1:13 AM on my iPad following a ranji match for the great man. Waiting for Pawar to get out or retire out. Either way works. Sorry Mumbai fans."

Sundar: "I'm not a big fan of Sachin.. Neither I have followed Ranji matches in 20 years.. But today I'm following up for Mumbai vs Haryana match..... OM(sachin)G !!!"

Sudesh Raj Sharma: "I wish I could stop following this match on the eve of my University exams....."

Mrudul: "Bunked office to get a glimpse of the master. Can never forget the 2 straight drives to Lee in CB series'08."

Varun Gopal: "I am from Kerala. And here I am watching Haryana vs Mumbai without even caring about my home team's progress. Love for just one man !!"

Sharu: "I am 13 year from pondicherry bunking school to watch god"

Bharath Reddy Kolli: "Its 1:05 am here in Kansas, and I m continuously refreshing my browser to see if a wicket falls, Jst fr one person.. Once a Sachinist.. Always a Sachinist"

Varun Nair: "This will be the last Diwali when I ll be saving up my crackers for a Sachin tendulakr century."

Ravi: "1:20 am in Madison, WI. Have a grand rounds seminar give 7:30 am. Soon its going to be lunch. Think I will be sleepless tonight-For the Master!"

Vipul Kaushik: "@Varun Nair: Your comments brought a tear or two in my eyes with a feeling of nostalgia.."

Kashif Hassan: "My boss is on leave today and Sachin is surely going to come out to bat next! can't tell you how vigorously I have prayed for this combo to happen!"

Madhu: "How lucky are the people of Lahli, I'am scratching my head, chewing my nails thinking how can I manage tickets for match# 199, or 200 and they are blessed to see Sachin bat without any extra efforts."

Swadhin: "It is 3:15 AM in the morning at Toronto. Need to start office at 8 AM but waiting for my god to come to ground and I can see a glimpse of one of his last 5 innings"

Sanath Rai: "I think the most hated persons in the world right now are pawar and rahane for not getting out....."

Sheshachala G Sheernali: "@Swadhin: Its' 3:30PM in Singapore, hoping that Rane and Pawar will bat for at least next two hours, so that I can go home and see God coming to bat on one of his final innings."

Madhavan: "At this moment both these batsmen will be wishing their partner to lose his wicket, to bat with the great man for last one time."

Sharang: "Now that's what the world was waiting for. Ajinkya Rahane, this is the only dismissal no one would disapprove of.

Sachin walks in amidst the familiar roar

Sahil: "This is this small nothing village of around 10k people deafning noise ...all i can hear is sachin sachin sachin..."

Suman Dustakar: "@sahil, Not only in the ground, I am at office but still am screaming sachhinnnn sachin, sachhinnn sachin, sachhinnn sachin"

Varun: "Every boss will be having a tough time. The world has stopped working at 1.25 IST"

Deepak: "My heart is beating faster and butterflies in my stomach when Sachin is on strike. I still get nervous even after 23 years of watching him bat even in a Ranji Game. This is something I will miss the most after Sachin retires."

Sabareesh: "Not sure how many will stop watching this match once Sachin gets out. But I will be one among them!!!"

Girish: "My network admin wanted to ban all the cricket sites today as most of my employees would be glued to them. I told him do it only if he could keep mine on, as I didn't want to miss this. Glad he could not do it and half my office is following the score!"

Manoj Sundar: "If only Sachin could retire every day. We'd be having more fervor for Ranji and Test matches."

Maddy: "More than half of my team has gone to the cafeteria for lunch and it seems that they are glued to their seats watching the match. Why don't they understand that their Boss wants to have lunch as well?"

Anand Sathees Kumar: "This to me is the biggest contribution from the #Little Master - Making even a ranji trophy match followed by millions as if it is a world cup final...Take a bow SRT. You were,is and will always be an inspiration to billions and brought them to cricket. Therein lies SRT's difference compared to other collossals of the game..."

Hiren: "truly said Anand Sathees Kumar.....he will best remembered for the crowd puller...whatever runs he makes doesn't create any impact on us....we just wish to watch this man play the game....great ambassador of the sports."

Abhijeet Sawant: "All bowlers will be thinking if i gets wicket of Sachin atleast i will be a part of GK question "Which bowler did took wicket of Sachin Tendulkar in his last Ranji Match?"

Vinayak Shrigadi: "Sachin has inspired even his non-cricket playing critics to know more about cricket"

Abhishek: "I was never scared of exams...but everytime this man comes to bat, i get scared of him getting out!!! With his bat runs million heartbeats!!! #Sachin"

Satyaraj Behera: "The bowlers will be not be thinking rather they will be praying the god,"please give me your wicket; I'll be obliged"."

MahaSach: "A kindergarten, school boy, university boy, today a Scientist - all through watching Him play, the most wonderful times in my life... Thank You Sach"

Ravichandar: ""The bowlers will be not be thinking rather they will be praying the god,"please give me your wicket; I'll be obliged". Satyaraj - Did you say 'Praying', I heard it as 'Begging'."

Saurabh Pandey: "There's only one player who can draw more crowd in a domestic match... Sachin himself!"

Ravi: "Even the Pressure cooker in India would not have withstood the pressure as easily as Sachin. This great man playing in his last domestic takes the pressure even at this stage at his back to win this match"

Shashank khare: "We should be more worried about the empty stadiums for test matches after sachin's retirement than being happy at todays attendence!!"

Sukanya: "When ever a wicket falls after it is 2 heart skips a beat...and then it continues normally seeing its not He who got out!!"

Manoj Kumar: "Just checked back the score after Mumbai were 3 down. It is 5 down now and I was like "Oh! No, not again, Sachin should've got his 50 this match". Then realised, he is not out. Happy to see Sachin in the crease. Go Sachin Go! Win it for Mumbai :)"

Rupayan Ghosh: "Man.!! Not again.. this guy has been doing this bailing out job since 1989 now.. Let him bat in peace for his last 3 FC games guys.!!!!!"

Manu: "I have CAT exam after a week & i m doing a pie chart question related to cricket & in that chart 50% of runs are scored by sachin... we will miss these questions as well"

Sriram: "My Collegues in Germany have no idea as to how I am able to enjoy text commentary of a sport, which I love, and how tense I feel when SRT is nearing 50. Oh... he has hit a 50... hurrahhhhhhh"

Huzaifa: "After 6th wicket god save my life 4th time, thank GOD Sachin is safe !!"

Arpit: "In Office, chatting with my manager on some serious technical stuff and I ended up pasting comment on Sachin in his chat window instead of online window. Thankfully for me, he too happens to be ardent Sachin fan and now we are watching the match in cafeteria. #Sachin Fever=Work takes a backseat."

Adesh utekar: "now I wonder for people in India how much they expect from master from last 24 years. And sachin sir also enjoying the pressure of billions people."

Pravin: "Mohit Sharma must be praying that Sachin doesn't lose his wicket here....he will be part of Quiz questions forever"

Sardamit: "This will go down in history as the most followed Ranji match of all time - and the reason is obvious!

Jiten Surtani: "My colleague, a super Sachin fan is following this game on cricinfo. I couldn't understand when i saw the name of the teams, then i saw the batsman and realised its an emotional moment for my colleague. LOL"

Uday mallappa: "Even if Ind Aus Match is at 9 AM and say IND is batting, I bet most of the Indians would be watching this match."

Last day:
It was Ind Vs. Aus at 1:30 PM IST that day
Uday mallappa: "Even if Ind Aus Match is at 9 AM and say IND is batting, I bet most of the Indians would be watching this match."

Sachin vete: "All set for Bansi Lal Cricket Stadium to make its place in history forever....."

Krishna Pradyumna: "Dhawal Kulkarni, batting with Tendulkar in his final innings, was born on the day Sachin made his Ranji Trophy debut on 10 December 1988."

I am sure most of us would relate to all of the above and feel nostalgic. That's what Sachin has given us as nation and as an individual. He has made us proud and given us a sense of invincibility. We feel it's our own glory and victory when he scores and wins and have felt a personal pain when at times he has failed. He is India's most loved son.

This was just his last domestic game, can’t even imagine what will it be when he takes guard for one final time in Mumbai – can’t wait for November, 14 to 18.

In this Last 24 years he has flourished during a long drought for Indian cricket given us so many moments to cherish and he is one man that unites India and Indians like no other.

Not everyone was happy with Sachin, though. He was the most scrutinised cricketer of our era. Scrutinised by people who have never held a cricket bat in their hands in their life, leave alone a thought of entering a cricket filed. But he always maintained a dignified silence and let his bat do the talking and even when he walks in the sunset the history will forever do the talking for him.

                                                                                    ~ KARAN

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