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Your brother took our cricket back by five years, Sachin Tendulkar told Ian Chappell

Partha Bhaduri | TNN | Nov 29, 2015, 08.44 AM IST

NEW DELHI: It was moments after Sachin Tendulkar had announced his retirement at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai two years ago.
Emotionally drained and probably also a bit relieved that it was all over, Tendulkar had a quiet moment to himself in the dressing room when in walked Virat Kohli. India's current Test skipper was clutching something in his hands, something resembling a pouch. Something obviously very precious to him.
"I want you to have this," he said, grabbing Tendulkar by the hand. "It was given to me by my father. I am giving this to you." Tendulkar saw the pouch contained some threads. Then Virat touched his feet and Tendulkar said, "Arre tujhe toh galey lagna hai (Hey, we should be hugging instead)." Virat pretended not to hear. "I will miss you," he said glassy-eyed, and walked out. Tendulkar slumped back in his seat.
Cut back a few years, to a gym in Durban, and a chance meeting with former Australian captain Ian Chappell, who had written - during a particularly low point in Tendulkar's career - that the batsman should have a look in the "mirror".
Chappell saw Tendulkar working out and said, "So this is the secret." Tendulkar was still livid. "You guys conveniently change your tone," he shot back. "Your brother (Greg, ex-India coach) created all the problem. He took Indian cricket at least five years behind."

These and other memorable vignettes of a storied career were played out - some in Sachin's own words, some shared by Boria Majumdar, co-author of Sachin's autobiography 'Playing It My Way' - at the 'Unknown Sachin Tapes' session at the Times Lit Fest on Saturday evening.
Tendulkar has been known to be painfully politically correct throughout his career but the tapes reveal an opinionated, driven cricketer deeply obsessed with his craft, one who never cut corners and never expected anybody else to. This is probably why Tendulkar still sounds bitter about his perceived failures as captain, saying, "First time I was captain I felt there wasn't enough support from the selectors."

In a particularly candid segment, he talks about the pain of the tennis elbow injury. Sometimes he would chew painkillers instead of swallowing them, in futile hope that they would work better. Once he called up his wife Anjali from the hospital and told her, "Get a video camera. You have never seen me in so much pain."

The tapes also reveal a deep dislike of Greg Chappell's ways, but the best moments from the session were rare glimpses of Tendulkar's deadpan humour. Once, cajoled by the author why he reached out to wife Anjali and no other woman, Tendulkar simply said, "She was the only one I met. I was busy playing for India."
Cricket aside, the sessions also revealed what Tendulkar considers the high point of his life, when a child suffering from cerebral palsy got up and played out three deliveries with his bat before relapsing into a vegetative state.

« Last Edit: November 29, 2015, 12:55:44 PM by Blwe_torch »
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