Sachin Tendulkar PTI

Sachin Tendulkar became the second Indian after former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee to get the Order of Australia PTI

Mumbai: Nov 6, 2012

Master Blaster batsman Sachin Tendulkar was honoured with the Order of Australia on Tuesday by Australia’s Minister for Regional Australia, Simon Crean.

Tendulkar became the second Indian after former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee to get the Order of Australia.

Thanking Crean, Tendulkar said, “They are fierce competitors and play well and hard. But they also shower you with praised when you come out and play well. In fact my favourite ground away from home is Sydney.”

He spoke about his meeting the late Sir Donald Bradman. “When I asked him why a strike rate of 99.9, he replied: Son, it is not bad for a 90-year-old.”

Earlier, the Australian Prime Minister Julian Gillard, during her visit to India in October had announced that the Indian cricketer will be conferred the membership of the Order of Australia, an honour “rarely” awarded to non-Australians.

“So, I am also very pleased that we are going to confer on Sachin Tendulkar membership of the “Order of Australia”. This a very special honour very rarely awarded to someone who is not an Australian citizen or an Australian national.”

The decision, however, was later criticised by many. Former Australian cricketer Matthew Hayden said the Order of Australia should be exclusive to his countrymen only.

He said, “Now, if Sachin was living in Australia — give him the Prime Minister’s gong I reckon — but the reality of it is he’s living in India.”