Indian Legends >>
Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar

By popular vote, the greatest batsman in the world today, Sachin Tendulkar has the cricketing world at his feet. A fact reinforced by the reaction that greeted his suspended ban for ball-tempering during the second Test at Port Elizabeth. The adulation he commands world over is unsurpassed, perhaps since the days of Don Bradman, to whom of course he has been compared, by no less than the great man himself. While he may not end with a Test career average of 99.94, there is little doubt that based on his vigorous style of batsmanship and his insatiable appetite for runs and big scores, he is the most complete batsman since Vivian Richards. In many ways though he has surpassed even that outstanding West Indian batsman.

When Tendulkar is on song, there is no more majestic sight in the cricketing world. The spectators at the stadium are on their feet cheering while all over the world, TV audiences are glued to the screen. He has scored heavily on all kinds of wickets the world over, in conditions which lesser mortals have not been able to master and against bowlers whom other batsmen have found it difficult to score off. Immensely gifted and blessed with an impeccable technique, Tendulkar's batting is a dream, combining timing, elegance and power. Mentally very strong, Tendulkar is best when confronted by a challenge - as he showed when mowing down Shane Warne in India in 1998. Captain during two short stints, Tendulkar has made it clear that he would prefer to concentrate on his batting and indeed, he seems to be getting better with every passing year. Scoring two double centuries in successive seasons and being the first to cross the 10,000 run barrier in ODIs is clear proof of this. After a remarkable run of 84 Tests uninterrupted, a toe injury forced Tendulkar to miss the tour of Sri Lanka. The tour of South Africa surely won't rate among his fondest - despite have maintained a stainless reputation on and off the field, he found himself dragged into a mighty controversy. Batting-wise, his runs in the one-dayers and the first innings of the first Test would have given him immense pleasure but being a perfectionist his relative failure in the series as a whole would have rankled him.

The best thing from the fans' point of view - if not the bowler's - is that the entertainment, courtesy Tendulkar, is still at the intermission stage. Long may `The King' continue to regale his willing subjects!

Batting genius Sachin Tendulkar scaled another peak on Friday in his illustrious career when he became first batsman ever to score 20,000 runs in the history of international cricket. Tendulkar achieved this feat when he reached 21 in his knock of 43 on the second day of the second Test against West Indies. The superstar of Indian cricket reached the milestone when he scored a boundary off Carl Hooper. Apart from rattling up 8461 runs in 102 Test matches, the master blaster has amassed 11,544 runs from 300 one-day internationals to take his tally beyond the 20,000 mark. Only Sunil Gavaskar with 34 test hundreds is ahead of Tendulkar, who has so far scored 30 centuries. Not only has he scored the highest number of runs in one-dayers (11,544), he has also made a record 33 centuries in the limited over version of the game.