By CricketCountry Staff
Mumbai: Oct 5, 2012
"At the moment, my heart says I am okay,” was quoted by Times of India.
“I am 39 and I don't think I have plenty of cricket left in me. But it depends on my frame of mind and my physical ability to deliver. When I feel that I am not delivering what is needed, and then I will re-look at the scheme of things. I am already 39 and no one expects me to go on playing forever. I will go with what my heart says.”
“There are two different things -- scoring runs and what I feel. For instance, if this three-wicket ordeal had happened when I was 25, no one would have questioned it. Incidentally, it happened when I am 39, so questions were raised. This is natural. But I am still the best judge of what happens to my mind and body. When I feel it is time, I will take a call. It is going to be a tough call nevertheless. It is going to be tough because this is what I have been doing all my life. It is going to be difficult to suddenly hang my boots one day”
“I don't know. It is going to be hard because I haven't experienced anything close to what I might go through when I retire. I cannot relate this moment with any other moment in my life. It will be a tough call,” he said.
When asked whether he has been thinking about the moment when he retires, he said, “I am 39 plus and it is not abnormal for me to think of it. At that moment, I will go by what my heart says. At this moment, my heart says I am okay. But you will have to look at series by series.”
“Nobody decides in this manner. I do not know what is in store. I wish I knew. If I did know, I wouldn't have had to wait for 22 years to lift the World Cup. Perhaps, I would have done it in the first instance in Australia in 91-92 then.”
“I am looking at it series by series. As long as I feel that I can deliver, I will continue playing. It also depends on what the team feels and whether I am motivated enough to continue being on top of the game.”
Sachin said he will reassess about his future in November and take a decision whether he wants to retire from all forms of cricket.
“It again depends on what my heart tells me then. I need not take a call right now. When I play in November, I will re-assess things.”
When asked about what makes him still go on, Sachin said, “I have always been pushing myself, for the last 22 years and more, to play for India. It had always been a dream. When you play for India, you are playing a team sport. The 15-member squad has to move in the direction that the team wants you to move in. Everyone is striving to achieve something unique. Especially because it is a matter of pride and honour to play for India.”
“Therefore, there is no reason why I should not be pushing myself too hard. In fact, if I don't, then you should question me on why I am not pushing myself hard enough. I care about playing cricket for India. This is something I am not willing to make a compromise on. The day I stop playing, I do not want to feel that I did not give it my best shot.”
“We are always under pressure. There is no stage where a sportsman is not under pressure. Although, it is good to be under pressure, which will bring out the best in you. Personally, being nervous brings out the best in me and I prefer it that way. Also, there is no batsman who feels happy after getting out.”
“In this context, I was disappointed because I wanted to win the match for India, but I got bowled. But this reaction was blown out of proportion and pin-pointed conveniently. It was a natural reaction. You cannot expect me to take people's permission to react in a certain way.”
After Sachin got bowled in consecutive two innings, Sunil Gavaskar previously said, "Two consecutive innings, the master has been bowled. The gap between the pad and the bat is a worrying sign. This is never a good sign for a great batsman."
When asked about what does Sachin feel about this comment, he replied, “Sunil Gavaskar has also said positive things about me. When there have been a lot of positive feedback as well, why keep harping only on the negative comments? Ultimately, if I am out, I am out. I can't get stuck on one article about me and try to create something that the person is hoping to create out of it. I need to stay focused on the game and constantly keep finding ways to improve myself.”
“When I met Sir Don Bradman in 1998-99 on his 90th birthday, he told me that it is natural for a batsman to change after he is 30. I have played quite well for 9 years after I turned 30. It is natural for any person to slow down as he grows older.”
Sachin said he purposely stays away from people’s opinion to stay focused on the game.
“I have always stayed away from what people say about me, right from my younger days. My brother always told me that I need to keep away from all this to stay focused on the game. Irrespective of criticisms or praises that come your way, it is important to stay focused and keep improving your game.”