The day Sachin retires...
The question and the debate over Sachin Tendulkar’s retirement from the game of cricket have once again resurfaced. Former greats of the game, Imran Khan of Pakistan and Kapil Dev of India stirred the topic stating that the ‘Little Master’ should have quit the game after India won the ICC Cricket World Cup in 2011. Not to be left behind, Sourav Ganguly, the former Indian cricket captain also asserted Sachin should reconsider his ODI career and ask himself if he is still good enough for the game.
At 38, (will be 39 in April) to play the game at the highest level is a feat in itself considering many from his era have already retired. But as many, including his large number of fans, would say, it is indeed up to the Master Blaster to call it a day.
However, as a fan of Sachin, I have some points to make should the Little Master call it quits.
<b>Will cricket still be a religion in India?</b>
Cricket is considered a religion in India and Sachin Tendulkar, the god. No country worships the game and the players, especially Sachin, like in India. Perhaps, it is the only religion that brings the people of India under one roof and a stand in unity, regardless of their creed, belief, sex, caste, etc.
So, what happens to the game if the god quits? One has never heard of a religion without a god, and it is hard to fathom one. So, will cricket be the same in India? Hard questions to answer but India will have to face the reality, someday for sure, that cricket will be without its god, Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar.
<b>The number of run flows will decrease...</b>
Over 33,000 international runs, 100 international hundreds, the first player ever to score a double century in the ODIs – a feat like no other and one that would probably never be matched. Every run that he scores in is a record in the making, and it would be hard to imagine that the runs scored from the blades of his willow will come to an end.
In the history of cricket, perhaps, no player has entertained spectators as much as Sachin Tendulkar did with his bat. Every time the ball crosses the boundary line with his magical touch, the joy that it brings to his fans around the world is a feeling that is celestial.
With him gone, the runs coming in will slow down. But again, the world of cricket will have to accept the reality someday.
<b>Cricket will lose fans...</b>
I, for one, will stop watching cricket for sure.
The 1998 Sharjah Cup was one series that attracted me towards the game and the Master Blaster. Since then, I have followed all his games whenever possible, while trying to find a way when not possible. But I keep a track of his game, scores and the likes. Sachin is the only reason I watch and follow cricket in India, and should he quit, I quit too. And like me, I believe there are millions out there who are ardent fans of the Master and would probably quit watching the game once he retires.
One would also miss Sudhir Kumar Chaudhary, the ardent fan of the Little Master, who’s seen in every home match, painted up in a tri-colour and with the Indian national flag. He’s a delight to see in every match whenever Sachin plays. Probably, he would also be gone the day Sachin retires.
In short, cricket would lose quite a few fans the day Sachin retires.
<b>Delight for bowlers?</b>
On the other hand, Sachin’s retirement could be a delight to the opponent bowlers who have long dreaded his attacking style of play on the field. Considered one of the best attacking batsmen, legendary spinner Shane Warne has had nightmares of Sachin hitting his ball to every corner of the field. Had Warne not retired before Sachin, the latter’s retirement would definitely have brought him a sigh of relief. The same fact holds true for every bowler.
However, regardless of what happens to the game of cricket when Sachin retires or to his -- one thing is for sure, Cricket would have lost and will miss, perhaps, the greatest batsman of all times.
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