Sachin Tendulkar celebrating the first-ever 200 not out © AFP
Sachin Tendulkar celebrating the first-ever 200 not out © AFP

Sachin Tendulkar has declined the notion that he got less strike in the ending stages of the ODI against South Africa, the match in which he became the first-ever batsman to make a double century in the 50-over format. On February 24, 2010, Tendulkar went on to create history by breaching a landmark that was unthinkable for a very long time. Batting first, Tendulkar’s 200 not out had propelled India to a massive total of 401 for 3 in 50 overs, which included an unbeaten 101-run stand with MS Dhoni for the fourth wicket. Dhoni contributed with 68 not out in the stand and Tendulkar with 32, which gave an impression that Tendulkar got less strike.

Tendulkar had reached 191 not out by the completion of the 45th over, but he could get to his landmark only in the final over of the innings. In between, Dhoni, who was on a 13-ball 17, had raced to a 30-ball 53. Tendulkar got the strike only on the third ball of the final over; he worked it around point and took a single to create a record.

Recalling those moments, Tendulkar told News Nation that even though his friends thought he got less strike, he did not think on those lines. He said, “We were so focussed in the match that we did not realise… at that moment. But when I came out my friends said I got less strike. I said how does it matter? It does not matter how runs are made. If I am not wrong I got the second last ball in the last over and I think I was on 199. I got a yorker outside off which I played towards point and there was a mis-fielding as well. Anyway, we took off for a run which you would do in the last over. No, but I did not feel I got less strike.”