Thursday, July 29, 2010

Sachin Tendulkar

Sachin Tendulkar

Early years and personal life


Tendulkar was born in Bombay (now Mumbai). His father, Ramesh Tendulkar, a Marathi novelist, named Tendulkar after his favourite music director, Sachin Dev Burman. Tendulkar's elder brother Ajit encouraged him to play cricket. Tendulkar has two other siblings: a brother Nitin, and sister Savita.



Tendulkar attended Sharadashram Vidyamandir (High School),[1] where he began his cricketing career under the guidance of his coach and mentor, Ramakant Achrekar. During his school days he attended the MRF Pace Foundation to train as a fast bowler, but Australian fast bowler Dennis Lillee, who took a world record 355 Test wickets, was unimpressed, suggesting that Tendulkar focus on his batting instead.[20]



When he was young, Tendulkar would practice for hours on end in the nets. If he became exhausted, Achrekar would put a one-Rupee-coin on the top of the stumps, and the bowler who dismissed Tendulkar would get the coin. If Tendulkar passed the whole session without getting dismissed, the coach would give him the coin. Tendulkar now considers the 13 coins he won then as some of his most prized possessions.[21]



While at school, he developed a reputation as a child prodigy. He had become a common conversation point in Mumbai circles, where there were suggestions already that he would become one of the greats. His season in 1988 was extraordinary, with Tendulkar scoring a century in every innings he played. He was involved in an unbroken 664-run partnership in a Lord Harris Shield inter-school game in 1988 with friend and team mate Vinod Kambli, who would also go on to represent India. The destructive pair reduced one bowler to tears and made the rest of the opposition unwilling to continue the game. Tendulkar scored 326* in this innings and scored over a thousand runs in the tournament.[22] This was a record partnership in any form of cricket until 2006, when it was broken by two under-13 batsmen in a match held at Hyderabad in India.



When he was 14, Indian batting legend Sunil Gavaskar gave him a pair of his own ultra light pads. "It was the greatest source of encouragement for me," he said nearly 20 years later after surpassing Gavaskar's world record of 34 Test centuries.[23] On 24 May 1995,[24] Sachin Tendulkar married Anjali, a paediatrician and daughter of Gujarati industrialist Anand Mehta. They have two children, Sara (born 12 October 1997), and Arjun (born 24 September 1999).[25]



Tendulkar sponsors 200 underprivileged children every year through Apnalaya, a Mumbai-based NGO associated with his mother-in-law, Annabel Mehta.[26]



Early domestic career

On 11 December 1988, aged just 15 years and 232 days, Tendulkar scored 100 not out in his debut first-class match for Bombay against Gujarat, making him the youngest Indian to score a century on first-class debut. He followed this by scoring a century in his first Deodhar and Duleep Trophy.[27] He was picked by the Mumbai captain Dilip Vengsarkar after seeing him negotiate Kapil Dev in the nets,[1] and finished the season as Bombay's highest run-scorer.[28][29] He also made an unbeaten century in the Irani Trophy final,[30] and was selected for the tour of Pakistan next year, after just one first class season.[31]



His first double century was for Mumbai while playing against the visiting Australian team at the Brabourne Stadium in 1998.[1] He is the only player to score a century in all three of his Ranji Trophy, Duleep Trophy and Irani Trophy debuts.[32]



In 1992, at the age of 19, Tendulkar became the first overseas born player to represent Yorkshire[1][33] Tendulkar played 16 first-class matches for the county and scored 1070 runs at an average of 46.52.[34]



International career

Early career

Tendulkar played his first Test match against Pakistan in Karachi in 1989 aged just 16. He made just 15 runs, being bowled by Waqar Younis, who also made his debut in that match, but was noted for how he handled numerous blows to his body at the hands of the Pakistani pace attack.[35] In the final test in Sialkot, he was hit on the nose by a bouncer, but he declined medical assistance and continued to bat even as he gushed blood from it.[36] In a 20 over exhibition game in Peshawar, Tendulkar made 53 runs off 18 balls, including an over in which he scored 28 runs off Abdul Qadir.[37] This was later called "one of the best innings I have seen" by the then Indian captain Kris Srikkanth.[38] In all, he scored 215 runs at an average of 35.83 in the Test series, and was dismissed without scoring a run in the only One Day International he played.[39][40]



The series was followed by a tour of New Zealand in which he scored 117 runs at an average of 29.25 in, Tests including an innings of 88 in the Second Test.[41] He was dismissed without scoring in one the two one-day games he played, and scored 36 in the other.[42] On his next tour, to England in 1990, he became the second youngest cricketer to score a Test century as he made 119* at Old Trafford.[36] Wisden described his innings as "a disciplined display of immense maturity" and also wrote:[43]



"He looked the embodiment of India's famous opener, Gavaskar, and indeed was wearing a pair of his pads. While he displayed a full repertoire of strokes in compiling his maiden Test hundred, most remarkable were his off-side shots from the back foot. Though only 5ft 5in tall, he was still able to control without difficulty short deliveries from the English paceman."

Tendulkar further enhanced his development during the 1991–1992 tour of Australia, that included an unbeaten 148 in Sydney and a century on a fast, bouncing pitch at Perth. Merv Hughes commented to Allan Border at the time that "This little prick's going to get more runs than you, AB."[44]



Rise through the ranks



Tendulkar waits at the bowler's end.Tendulkar's performance through the years 1994–1999 coincided with his physical peak, in his early twenties. On the day of the Hindu festival Holi, Tendulkar was told to open the batting at Auckland against New Zealand in 1994.[45] He went on to make 82 runs off 49 balls. He scored his first ODI century on 9 September 1994 against Australia in Sri Lanka at Colombo. It had taken him 79 ODIs to score a century.



In 1996 against Pakistan in Sharjah, Indian captain Mohammed Azharuddin was going through a lean patch. Tendulkar and Navjot Singh Sidhu both made centuries to set a record partnership for the second wicket. After getting out, Tendulkar found Azharuddin in two minds about whether he should bat. Tendulkar convinced Azharuddin to bat and Azharuddin subsequently unleashed 29 runs in mere 10 balls. It enabled India post a score in excess of 300 runs for the first time in an ODI. India went on to win that match.



Tendulkar's rise continued when he was the leading run scorer at the 1996 Cricket World Cup, scoring two centuries.[46] He was the only Indian batsman to perform in the infamous semi-final against Sri Lanka. Tendulkar fell amid a batting collapse and the match referee awarded Sri Lanka the match after the crowd began rioting and set fire to the stadium.



This was the beginning of a period at the top of the batting world, culminating in the Australian tour of India in early 1998, with Tendulkar scoring three consecutive centuries. These were characterized by a premeditated plan to target Australian spinners Shane Warne and Gavin Robertson, to whom he regularly charged down the pitch to drive over the infield. This technique worked as India beat Australia. The test match success was followed by two scintillating knocks in Sharjah where he scored two consecutive centuries in a must-win game and then in finals against Australia tormenting Shane Warne once again. Following the series Warne ruefully joked that he was having nightmares about his Indian nemesis.[47] He also had a role with the ball in that series, including a five wicket haul in an ODI. Set 310 runs to win, Australia were cruising comfortably at 3 for 203 in the 31st over when Tendulkar turned the match for India taking wickets of Michael Bevan, Steve Waugh, Darren Lehmann, Tom Moody and Damien Martyn for just 32 runs in 10 overs.[48]



Tendulkar single-handedly won the ICC 1998 quarterfinal at Dhaka to pave way for India's entry into the semifinals, when he took four Australian wickets after scoring 141 runs in just 128 balls.



A chronic back problem flared up when Pakistan toured India in 1999, with India losing the historic Test at Chepauk despite a gritty century from Tendulkar himself. The worst was yet to come as Professor Ramesh Tendulkar, Tendulkar's father, died in the middle of the 1999 Cricket World Cup. Tendulkar flew back to India to attend the final rituals of his father, missing the match against Zimbabwe. However, he returned with a bang to the World cup scoring a century (unbeaten 140 off 101 balls) in his very next match against Kenya in Bristol. He dedicated this century to his father.[49]



Captaincy

Tendulkar's two tenures as captain of the Indian cricket team were not very successful. When Tendulkar took over as Captain in 1996, it was with huge hopes and expectations. However, by 1997 the team was performing poorly. Azharuddin was credited with saying "Nahin jeetega! Chote ki naseeb main jeet nahin hai!",[50] which translates into: "He won't win! It's not in the small one's destiny!".[51]



Tendulkar, succeeding Azharuddin as captain for his second term, then led India on a tour of Australia, where the visitors were comprehensively beaten 3–0 by the newly crowned world champions.[52] Tendulkar, however, was at his usual best and won the player of the tournament award as well as player of the match in one of the games. After another Test series defeat, this time by a 0–2 margin at home against South Africa, Tendulkar resigned, and Sourav Ganguly took over as captain in 2000.



Tendulkar remains an integral part of the Indian team's strategic processes. He is often seen in discussion with the captain, at times actively involved in building strategies. Former captain Rahul Dravid publicly acknowledged that Tendulkar had been suggesting moves such as the promotion of Irfan Pathan up the batting order which, although only temporary, had an immediate effect on the team's fortunes. In 2007, Tendulkar was appointed vice-captain to captain Rahul Dravid.[53] During the Indian team's 2007 tour of England, Dravid's desire to resign from the captaincy became known. The BCCI President Sharad Pawar personally offered the captaincy to Tendulkar.[54] However, Tendulkar asked Pawar not to appoint him captain, instead recommending Mahendra Singh Dhoni, to take-over the reigns.[55] Pawar later revealed this conversation, crediting Tendulkar for first forwarding Dhoni's name, who since achieved much success as captain.[56]









Injuries and apparent decline

Tendulkar continued performing well in Test cricket in 2001 and 2002, with some pivotal performances with both bat and ball. Tendulkar took three wickets on the final day of the famous Kolkata Test against Australia in 2001. Tendulkar took the key wickets of Matthew Hayden and Adam Gilchrist, centurions in the previous test.



In the 2002 series in the West Indies, Tendulkar started well, scoring 79 in the first test, and 117 in the first innings of the second. Then, in a hitherto unprecedented sequence, he scored 0, 0, 8 and 0 in the next four innings, getting out to technical "defects" and uncharacteristically poor strokes. He returned to form in the last test scoring 41 and 86. However, India lost the series. This might have been the beginning of the "decline" phase in his career which lasted till 2006.



Tendulkar made 673 runs in 11 matches in the 2003 Cricket World Cup, helping India reach the final. While Australia retained the trophy that they had won in 1999, Tendulkar was given the Man of the Tournament award.



He continued to score heavily in ODI cricket that year, with two hundreds in a tri series involving New Zealand and Australia.



The drawn series as India toured Australia in 2003/04 saw Tendulkar making his mark in the last Test of the series, with 241* in Sydney, putting India in a virtually unbeatable position. He followed up the innings with an unbeaten 60 in the second innings of the test. Prior to this test match, he had had an unusually horrible run of form, failing in all six innings in the preceding three tests. It was no aberration that 2003 was his worst year in test cricket, with an average of 17.25 and just one fifty.



He scored an unbeaten 194 against Pakistan at Multan in the following series. The 194 was controversial as he was stranded prior to reaching his double century as a result of a declaration by Rahul Dravid. In meeting with the press that evening, Tendulkar responded to a question on missing 200 against Pakistan by stating that he was disappointed and that the declaration had taken him by surprise.[57] Many former cricketers commented that Dravid's declaration was in bad taste.[58][59] The media noted at the time that the decision had apparently been made by Sourav Ganguly,[60] and Ganguly himself later admitted that it had been a mistake.[61] The controversy was put to rest when Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar and coach John Wright spoke to the media after the team's victory and stated that the matter was spoken internally and put to rest.[62]



Tennis elbow then took its toll on Tendulkar, leaving him out of the side for most of the year, coming back only for the last two tests when Australia toured India in 2004. He played a part in India's victory in Mumbai in that series with a fast 55, though Australia took the series 2–1.



On 10 December 2005 at Feroz Shah Kotla, Tendulkar scored his record-breaking 35th Test century, against the Sri Lankans.



In the test series in Pakistan in 2006, Sachin failed to get going in all three innings despite the pitches being flat tracks. In the third of those three innings, he was bowled comprehensively after making 26, and ended up on all fours. This prompted The Times of India to publish an article entitled "Endulkar" in which TOI opined that Tendulkar's batting prowess had declined and his career had slid permanently.



On 6 February 2006, he scored his 39th ODI hundred, in a match against Pakistan. He followed with a run-a-ball 42 in the second one-day international against Pakistan on 11 February 2006, and then a 95 in hostile, seaming conditions on 13 February 2006 in Lahore, which set up an Indian victory.



On 19 March 2006, after scoring an unconvincing 1 off 21 balls against England in the first innings of the third Test in his home ground, Wankhede, Tendulkar was booed off the ground by a section of the crowd,[63][64] the first time that he had ever faced such flak. Tendulkar was to end the three-Test series without a single half-century to his credit, and news of a shoulder operation raised more questions about his longevity. Tendulkar was operated upon for his injured shoulder. In July 2006, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) announced that Tendulkar had overcome his injury problem following a rehabilitation programme and was available for selection, and he was eventually selected for the next series.



Tendulkar's comeback came in the DLF cup in Malaysia and he was the only Indian batsman to shine. In his comeback match, against West Indies on 14 September 2006, Tendulkar responded to his critics who believed that his career was inexorably sliding with his 40th ODI century. Though he scored 141*, West Indies won the rain-affected match by the D/L method.



In the preparation for the 2007 Cricket World Cup, Tendulkar was criticized by Greg Chappell on his attitude.[65] As per the report, Chappell felt that Tendulkar would be more useful down the order, while the latter felt that he would be better off opening the innings, the role he had played for most of his career. Chappell also believed that Tendulkar's repeated failures were hurting the team's chances. In a rare show of emotion, Tendulkar hit out at the comments attributed to Chappell by pointing out that no coach has ever suggested his attitude towards cricket is incorrect. On 7 April 2007, the Board of Control for Cricket in India issued a notice to Tendulkar asking for an explanation for his comments made to the media.[66]



At the Cricket World Cup 2007 in the West Indies, Tendulkar and the Indian cricket team, led by Rahul Dravid had a dismal campaign. Tendulkar, who was pushed to bat lower down the order by the Greg Chappell had scores of 7 (Bangladesh), 57* (Bermuda) and 0 (Sri Lanka). As a result, former Australian captain Ian Chappell, brother of the then Indian coach Greg, called for Tendulkar to retire in his column for Mumbai's Mid Day newspaper.[67]



During this period from about 2002 to 2006–7, Tendulkar's batting often seemed to be a shadow of its former self. He was inconsistent, and his big knocks mostly came in sedate, accumulative, uncharacteristic fashion. He seemed to have either cut out or lost the ability to play many shots, including the hook and pull and many other aerial strokes. He also developed a tendency to go without scoring much for long periods and become overtly defensive. While players such as Ponting and Kallis were at the peak of their careers, Sachin's seemed to be in terminal decline. There were several calls from him to retire too.



However after the 2007 World Cup, his career had a second wind and his consistency and form have returned.



Return to old form and consistency

In the subsequent series against Bangladesh, Tendulkar returned to his opening slot and was Man of the Series. He continued by scoring two consecutive scores of over 90 in the Future Cup against South Africa. He was the leading run scorer and was adjudged the Man of the Series.[68]





Tendulkar celebrates upon reaching his 38th Test century against Australia in the 2nd Test at the SCG in 2008, where he finished not out on 154On the second day of the Nottingham Test (28 July 2007) Tendulkar became the third cricketer to complete 11,000 Test runs.[69] In the subsequent One day series against England, Tendulkar was the leading run scorer from India[70] with an average of 53.42. In the ODI Series against Australia in October 2007 Tendulkar was the leading Indian run scorer with 278 runs.[71]



Tendulkar was dismissed seven times in 2007 between 90 and 100, including three times at 99, leading some to suggest that he struggles to cope with nerves in this phase of his career. Tendulkar has got out 23 times between 90 and 100 in his international career. On 8 November 2007 he got out on 99 against Pakistan in an ODI at Mohali to the bowling of Umar Gul caught by Kamran Akmal. In the fourth ODI, he got out on 97 (off 102 balls with 16 fours) after dragging a delivery from Umar Gul on to his stumps, falling short of another century in ODIs in 2007.



2007/08 tour of Australia

In the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, 2007–08, Tendulkar showed exceptional form, becoming the leading run scorer with 493 runs in four Tests, despite consistently failing in the second innings. Sachin scored 62 runs in the first innings of the first Test at the MCG in Melbourne, but couldn't prevent a heavy 337-run win for Australia. In the controversial New Years Test at Sydney, Tendulkar scored an unbeaten 154 as India lost the Test. This was his third century at the SCG, earning him an average of 221.33 at the ground. In the third Test at the WACA in Perth, Sachin was instrumental in India's first innings score of 330, scoring a well compiled 71, as India went on to record a historic triumph at the WACA. In the fourth Test at Adelaide, which ended in a draw, he scored 153 in the first innings, involving in a crucial 126 run stand with V.V.S. Laxman for the fifth wicket to lead India to a score of 282 for 5 from 156 for 4. He secured the Player of the Match award.



In the One-Day International Commonwealth Bank Tri-Series involving Sri Lanka and Australia, Tendulkar became the first and only batsman to complete 16,000 runs in ODIs. He achieved this feat against Sri Lanka on 5 February 2008 at Brisbane. He started the CB series well notching up scores of 10, 35, 44 and 32, but could not convert the starts into bigger scores. His form dipped a bit in the middle of the tournament, but Tendulkar came back strongly in India's must-win game against Sri Lanka at Hobart, scoring 63 off 54 balls. He finished the series with a match winning 117 not out off 120 balls in the first final,[72] and 91 runs in the second final.[73]



Home series against South Africa

In the first test of a three-test series against South Africa at home, Tendulkar made a duck in the first innings. He missed the rest of the series, which was drawn 1–1, with an injury.



Sri Lanka Series

Before the three-Test series in Sri Lanka in mid-2008, Tendulkar needed just 177 runs to go past Brian Lara's record of 11,953 runs in test cricket. However, he failed in all six innings, scoring a total of just 95 runs. India lost 1–2.



Return to form and breaking the record

In the following ODI series against Sri Lanka, Tendulkar was sidelined due to injury. However, during the following Australia tour of India, he returned to fitness and form, scoring 13 and 49 in the first test before making 88 in the first innings of the second test, thus breaking the record for most number of Test runs held by Brian Lara. He also reached the 12,000 run mark when he was on 61. He made a fifty in the third test and 109 in the fourth, as India won the series 2–0 and regained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.



ODI and Test Series against England

Tendulkar was again out due to injury from the first three ODIs of a 7-match ODI series at home against England, but he made 11 in the fourth ODI and 50 in the fifth, before the ODI series was called off due to the Mumbai terror attacks, the scoreline being 5–0 to India.



England returned for a 2-match test series in December 2008, and in the first test in Chennai, chasing 387 for victory, Tendulkar made 103 not out in a 163-run unbroken fifth wicket stand with Yuvraj Singh. This was his third century in a fourth match innings, and the first which resulted in a win. This was redemption for the Chennai Test of 1999 when chasing 271 against Pakistan, Sachin had made 136 with severe back pain and was out 17 runs short of the target, precipitating a collapse and a loss by 12 runs. He dedicated this century to the victims of the Mumbai terror attacks. Tendulkar failed in both innings in the second test, India won the series 1–0.



Sri Lanka ODIs

In early 2009, India revisited Sri Lanka for five ODIs, as the Pakistan series had been cancelled due to the security situation in Pakistan and the attacks in Mumbai. In the first three ODIs, Sachin made 5, 6 and 7. Then he was injured again.



New Zealand Series

India's next assignment was the away series against New Zealand. It consisted of three Tests and five ODIs. In the ODI series, Tendulkar started off with 20 in the first match followed by 61 in the second. Then he made a 163 not out in the third ODI, an innings ended by stomach cramps that forced him to retire hurt. India made 392 and won easily. Sachin was out of the next two ODIs due to injury but India won the series 3–1 with one game washed out. Tendulkar made 160 in the first test, his 42nd Test century, and India won. He made 49 and 64 in the second test and 62 and 9 in the third, in which India were prevented from winning by rain on the last day. India won the series 1–0.



Compaq Cup in Sri Lanka

Tendulkar rested himself for the ODI tour of West Indies, but was back for the Compaq Cup (Tri Series) between India, SL and New Zealand in early September 2009. He made 46 and 27 in the league matches before notching up 138 in the final, as India made 319 and won by 46 runs. This was Tendulkar's 6th century in ODI finals and his third consecutive score of over 50 in such finals. India has won all six times that Tendulkar has made a hundred in an ODI final.



ICC Champions Trophy 2009

Tendulkar played just one innings in the ICC Champions trophy in South Africa, scoring 8 against Pakistan as India lost. The next match against Australia was washed out and he was out with food poisoning in the third match against the Windies, as India were eliminated after beating the Windies and finishing third in their group.



India-Australia ODI Series

Australia returned for a seven-match ODI series in India in October, and Tendulkar made 14, 4, 32 and 40 in the first four games.



In the fifth match, with the series tied at 2–2, Australia amassed 350/4 in 50 overs. Tendulkar made his 45th ODI hundred, a 175 off just 141 balls. Just when it seemed that he would steer India to the large victory target, he paddle-scooped debutant bowler Clint McKay straight to short fine leg, with India needing 19 from 18 balls with four wickets left. The Indian tail collapsed, and they lost by 3 runs, being all out for 347.



During this match, Tendulkar also became the first player to reach 17,000 ODI runs, and achieved his personal best against Australia, as well as the third highest score in a defeat. He described it as one of his best innings but said it could have been better had India won the match.



Sri Lanka Series

In the ODIs against Sri Lanka in 2009–10, Tendulkar scored 69, 43, 96 not out and 8, as India won 3–1.



In the Test Series, he scored a 100 no out in the first test, which was drawn, and a fifty in the second. India won the series 2–0.



Bangladesh Test Series

Sachin rested himself for the ODI tri series in Bangladesh in 2010. In the Tests against Bangladesh, he made 105 not out and 16 in the first test, and 143 in the second. India won 2–0.



Series against South Africa in 2010

In the 2-Test Series against South Africa, Tendulkar made seven and 100 in the first test and 106 in the first innings of the second test. In the course of the second 100 (his 47th Test Hundred) he achieved several landmarks, in that he had scored four hundreds in his last four matches and that the hundred against South Africa in the first Test was the first at home against South Africa. The century was also his hundredth score over 50 in International Test cricket, moving him to 92 international hundreds (Tests and ODIs combined). In the subsequent ODI series, Tendulkar was run out in the first ODI for four runs, but made a strong comeback in the second match, scoring a brisk hundred off just 90 balls. This also took his tally of hundreds to 46 in ODIs and 93 in tests and ODIs combined. He finished the match on 200*, thus becoming the first batsman in the history of ODI cricket to score a double century, eclipsing Saeed Anwar's 194 against India and Charles Coventry's 194* versus Bangladesh.[74][75]



Indian Premier League

Tendulkar was made the icon player and captain for his home side, the Mumbai Indians in the inaugural Indian Premier League Twenty20 competition in 2008.[76] As an icon player, he was signed for a sum of US$1,121,250, 15% more than the second-highest paid player in the team, Sanath Jayasuriya.[77]



In 2010 edition of Indian Premier League, Mumbai Indians reached the final of the tournament. Tendulkar made 618 runs in 14 innings during the tournament, breaking Shaun Marsh's record of most runs in an IPL season. He was declared player of the tournament for his performance during the season. He also won Best Batsman and Best Captain awards at 2010 IPL Awards ceremony.



Style of play



Tendulkar plays a wristy leg-side flickTendulkar is cross-dominant: He bats, bowls and throws with his right hand, but writes with his left hand.[78] He also practices left-handed throws at the nets on a regular basis. Cricinfo columnist Sambit Bal has described him as the "most wholesome batsman of his time".[1] His batting is based on complete balance and poise while limiting unnecessary movements and flourishes. He appears to show little preference for the slow and low wickets which are typical in India, and has scored many centuries on the hard, bouncy pitches in South Africa and Australia.[1] He is known for his unique punch style of hitting the ball over square. He is also renowned for his picture-perfect straight drive, often completed with no follow-through. Recently, legendary Indian batsman Sunil Gavaskar, in an article he wrote in the AFP, remarked that "it is hard to imagine any player in the history of the game who combines classical technique with raw aggression like the little champion does".[5]



Sir Donald Bradman, considered by many as the greatest batsman of all time, considered Tendulkar to have a batting style similar to his. In his biography, it is stated that "Bradman was most taken by Tendulkar's technique, compactness and shot production, and had asked his wife to have a look at Tendulkar, having felt that Tendulkar played like him. Bradman's wife, Jessie, agreed that they did appear similar."[79][80]





Tendulkar at the crease, getting ready to face a deliveryFormer Australian cricket team coach John Buchanan voiced his opinion that Tendulkar had become susceptible to the short ball early in his innings because of a lack of footwork.[81] Buchanan also believes Tendulkar has a weakness while playing left-arm pace.[81] He was affected by a series of injuries since 2004. Since then Tendulkar's batting has tended to be less attacking. Explaining this change in his batting style, he has acknowledged that he is batting differently due to that fact that, firstly, no batsman can bat the same way for the entire length of a long career and, secondly, he is a senior member of the team now and thus has more responsibility. During the early part of his career he was a more attacking batsman and frequently scored centuries at close to a run a ball. Ian Chappell, former Australian player, recently remarked that "Tendulkar now, is nothing like the player he was when he was a young bloke".[82]



Tendulkar has incorporated several modern and unorthodox strokes into his repertoire in recent times, including the paddle sweep, the scoop over short fine leg and the slash to third man over the slips' heads, over the last seven or eight years. This has enabled him to remain scoring consistently in spite of the physical toll of injuries and a lean period in the mid-2000s. By his own admission, he does not bat as aggressively as he did in the 90s and early 2000s, because his body has undergone changes and cannot sustain aggressive shotmaking over a long period. He is often praised for his ability to adapt to the needs of his body and yet keep scoring consistently.



While Tendulkar is not a regular bowler, he is adept at bowling medium pace, leg spin, and off spin with equal ease. He often bowls when two batsmen of the opposite team have been batting together for a long period, as he can often be a useful partnership breaker. With his bowling, he has helped secure an Indian victory on more than one occasion.[83] He has taken 44 test match wickets and is the ninth highest wicket taker for India in ODIs.[84]



Controversies

Mike Denness incident

Main article: Mike Denness and Indian cricket team incident

In the second test of India's 2001 tour of South Africa, match referee Mike Denness fined four Indian players for excessive appealing as well as the Indian captain Sourav Ganguly for not controlling his team.[85] Tendulkar was given a suspended ban of one game in light of alleged ball tampering. Television cameras picked up images that suggested Tendulkar may have been involved in cleaning the seam of the cricket ball in the second test match between India and South Africa at St George's Park, Port Elizabeth.[86] This can, under some conditions, amount to altering the condition of the ball. The match referee Mike Denness found Sachin Tendulkar guilty of ball tampering charges and handed him a one Test match ban.[87] The incident escalated to include allegations of racism,[88] and led to Mike Denness being barred from entering the venue of the third test match. After a thorough investigation, the International Cricket Council revoked the official status of the match and the ban on Tendulkar was lifted. Tendulkar's ball tampering charges and Sehwag's ban for excessive appealing triggered a massive backlash from the Indian public and even the Indian parliament.[89]



Controversy over Ferrari customs waiver

In commemorating Tendulkar's feat of equalling Don Bradman's 29 centuries in Test Cricket, automotive giant Ferrari invited Tendulkar to its paddock in Silverstone on the eve of the British Grand Prix (23 July 2002) to receive a Ferrari 360 Modena from the F1 world champion Michael Schumacher.[90] On 4 September 2002 India's then finance minister Jaswant Singh wrote to Tendulkar telling him that the government will waive customs duty imposed on the car as a measure to applaud his feat.[91] However the rules at the time stated that the customs duty can be waived only when receiving an automobile as a prize and not as a gift. It is claimed that the proposals to change the law (Customs Act) was put forth in Financial Bill in February 2003 and amended was passed as a law in May 2003. Subsequently the Ferrari was allowed to be brought to India without payment of the customs duty (Rs 1.13 Crores or 120% on the car value of Rs 75 Lakhs).[92] When the move to waive customs duty became public in July 2003, political and social activists protested the waiver[93] and filed PIL in the Delhi High Court. With the controversy snowballing, Tendulkar offered to pay the customs duty, which was finally picked up by Ferrari.[94] Tendulkar has been seen taking his Ferrari 360 Modena for late-night drives in Mumbai.



In popular culture

Fan following



Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary, a die hard fan of Tendulkar who earned the privilege to get tickets to all home games of India for lifetimeTendulkar's entry into world cricket was very much hyped up by former Indian stars and those who had seen him play. By scoring his first half-century in his second match and his first century aged 17, Tendulkar's consistent performances earned him a fan following across the globe, including amongst Australian crowds, where Tendulkar has consistently scored centuries.[44] One of the most popular sayings by his fans is "Cricket is my religion and Sachin is my God".[95] Cricinfo mentions in his profile that "... Tendulkar remains, by a distance, the most worshipped cricketer in the world."[96] During the Australian tour of India in 1998 Matthew Hayden said "I have seen God. He bats at no. 4 in India in Tests." [97]



At home in Mumbai, Tendulkar's fan following is so great that he is unable to lead a normal life. Ian Chappell has said that he would be unable to cope with the lifestyle Tendulkar was forced to lead, having to "wear a wig and go out and watch a movie only at night".[82] In an interview with Tim Sheridan, Tendulkar admitted that he sometimes went for quiet drives in the streets of Mumbai late at night when he would be able to enjoy some peace and silence.[98]



Business interests

Tendulkar's immense popularity has led him to numerous profitable business dealings in the past. He currently has the most sponsorships out of all players in world cricket. Sachin Tendulkar was an early pioneer in India on cricket business dealings when he signed a then record sports management deal with Worldtel in 1995, the value of the deal being 30 crore rupees over five years.[99] His next contract with WorldTel in 2001 was valued at 80 crores over five years.[100] In 2006, he signed a contract with Saatchi and Saatchi's ICONIX values at 180 crores over three years.[101] He is the highest earning cricketer in the world.



Making use of his popularity, Tendulkar has opened two restaurants: 'Tendulkar's'[102] (Colaba, Mumbai) and 'Sachin's'[103] (Mulund, Mumbai). Sachin owns these restaurants in partnership with Sanjay Narang of Mars Restaurants. He has also got a new restaurant in Bangalore called Sachin's.



In 2007, Tendulkar also announced a JV with the Future Group and Manipal Group to launch healthcare and sports fitness products under the brand name 'S Drive and Sach'.[104] A series of comic books by Virgin Comics is also due to be published featuring him as a superhero.[105]