The Sachin Tendulkar factor: Indian cricketers reveal the influence of the maestro in their careers

Cricketers who spoke in unconcealed awe about Sachin Tendulkar… (clockwise fro top left) Ravichandran Ashwin, Rohit Sharma, S Sreesanth, Ravindra Jadeja, Pragyan Ojha, Irfan Pathan, Parthiv Patel and Lakshmipathy Balaji © Getty Images

By CricketCountry Staff
Mumbai: Apr 22, 2013
Several Indian cricketers spoke in unconcealed awe while speaking about Sachin Tendulkar and his influence in their playing the game.
Speaking to Boria Mazumdar for a special edition of the Outlook magazine, Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin spoke about the enthusiasm Tendulkar shows even after playing the game for two decades.
“Perhaps the best way to describe Sachin is that he is the only gentleman to have played cricket for 24 long years with the enthusiasm of a 10-year-old. The way he chases each ball, for example, is a revelation to most, and his commitment and passion is just unparalleled,” Ashwin said.
“The one thing I will always remember is winning the 2011 World Cup with him. Winning the World Cup on home soil was the pinnacle of his glorious career and it was a special moment for each and every member of the team also because of that. As we did a victory lap at the Wankhede and Sachin was carried on the shoulders of some of my teammates, each of us could feel what the triumph meant to him,” he added.
Mumbai’s Rohit Sharma spoke about Tendulkar’s influence in his cricketing career so far.
“He [Sachin Tendulkar] is my mentor, my idol, someone I look up to. He is the reason for my conversion from bowler to batsman. The way he conducts himself, his routine and his ruthless attitude are incredible. To remain grounded despite considerable achievements is difficult but is the most striking aspect about Sachin,” Sharma said.
Fast bowler Shantakumaran Sreesanth lauded Tendulkar for always helping him out on the field.
“He has always helped me when I bowled. Even though Sachin had smashed a double ton in a one-dayer against South Africa, the first-ever in ODI cricket, he came on the field straight away. I was bowling with the new ball and I managed to get three wickets. He really helped me on how to bowl on a flat track,” Sreesanth said.
One of India’s new recruits and an internet sensation, Ravindra Jadeja too spoke about the batting legend and said that Tendulkar redefined the way sport is watched in India and said that he inspires generations together to come out and perform well in the game.
“He is a true legend. Sachin has redefined sports adulation, uniting a billion plus every time he steps out for India. There have been champions, there have been legends, but there will never be another Sachin Tendulkar who continues to inspire me and many more cricketers in future,” Jadeja said.
Indian left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha spoke about being handed his Test cap by Tendulkar.
“While I have been privileged to share the dressing room with him, the moment when Sachin handed over my debut Test cap is unforgettable, he congratulated me every single time I picked a wicket.”
All-rounder Irfan Pathan said there was a lot to learn from Tendulkar.
“For me, Sachin is an education. You can learn a lot from him just watching him on and off the field. The way he has carried himself in international cricket is commendable. My father always says how humble Sachin is despite scaling such heights. My favourite Sachin moment is batting with him for the first time in Sydney, and he guiding me against Brett Lee, at the age of 19,” Irfan said.
Wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel said that Tendulkar inspired him to take up cricket at a young age.
“Sachin Tendulkar is the reason why I started playing cricket. He is my biggest inspiration. I will never forget the two smashing innings he played in Sharjah to rescue India. My favourite moment has to be the 100-run stand I shared with him in the Sydney Test where I also got my first Test 50,” Parthiv said.
Medium-pacer Lakshmipathy Balaji spoke about how Tendulkar has been the constant as Indian cricket went from the lows of 1999 to the highs of the World Cup win in 2011.
“My father followed Sachin Tendulkar and I started as a gully cricketer only because of Sachin. Sachin and cricket are equal to me. From Test cricket to 50-over cricket and now to T20, he has adapted well to all the formats. Even today, he is keen to innovate and keep changing with each passing day. From the lows of Indian cricket in 1999 to the highs of the 2011 World Cup, Sachin’s been a constant,” Balaji said.

More stories on what cricketers and celebrities have to say about Sachin Tendulkar ahead of his 40th birthday