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By Raza Murad
Before Sachin Tendulkar played for India, I had heard about him and seen photos of the prodigious youngster. But, the first time I watched him bat was when he travelled to Pakistan for his maiden tour in 1989 and he had made his debut at Karachi. This young boy was up against the likes of Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram and Imran Khan.
Later on the tour, he was hit on the nose by Waqar and he bled. Here was a child, up against three fierce bowlers and I was worried. But, then he hit the next ball to the boundary and that dispelled all the doubts.
Sachin has played for 24 years and there have been many memorable moments throughout. To pick one is a very difficult as he has given us so much joy.
I was in Delhi once when India were playing a Test match. I was staying at the Hotel Le Meridian and when I was in the lobby, he saw me. Immediately, he came towards me, greeted me and said, “I am your fan.” That is his greatness. I am not an Amitabh Bachchan or an Aamir Khan, but he still came and wished me. That has been my only personal meeting with him so far. Of course, I have watched him play quite a lot.
As he retires, I would say that Sachin has made the right decision. He was at the peak of his powers for a long time during his career. It is a timely call by him. Despite all the challenges, he made the decision on his own.
— As told to Nishad Pai Vaidya
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(Raza Murad is a famous Indian actor who has featured in numerous Bollywood films and television shows)
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