Hope I can live up to fans` expectations against West Indies, says Sachin
Lahli (Haryana): After guiding Mumabi to a Ranji win over Haryana in his final domestic game, retiring Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar today said he is now eagerly looking forward to his farewell Test series against the West Indies, which starts in Kolkata on November 6.
Tendulkar will bring the curtain down on his glorious 24-year tryst with international cricket against the West Indies after playing his landmark 200th Test in Mumbai from November 14-18.
"It will be a good series. They (West Indies) are a good side, something that I`ll be looking forward to...My last couple of Test matches. I hope it produces good cricket and lives up to the expectations of all my well wishers," Tendulkar said after guiding Mumbai to a four-wicket win over Haryana.
Tendulkar warmed up for the Test series against the West Indies with a calculated 175-ball unbeaten 79 in Mumbai`s challenging chase of 240 runs in the second innings at the lively Chaudhary Bansi Lal Cricket Stadium wicket here.
"It was a challenging wicket. It had a lot for the bowlers but it was fun to bat on this wicket. The bowlers were getting assistance from the wicket so it was not easy to score runs," the retiring legend said after playing his last Ranji Trophy game.
"240 was a big total to chase. The oufield was also on the slower side. 240 looked like 280 to chase on this wicket. This is just the kind of outing I was looking for.
"Haryana played very good cricket. All credit to them for putting up a good challenge and making it a memorable contest," Tendulkar said.
The stadium of this sleepy town was packed to capacity on all the four days of the match to watch Tendulkar bat for one last time in domestic cricket and the champion batsman thanked the orgainsers and the crowd for their overwhelming support.
"Fantastic arrangement, I would like to thank Haryana Cricket Association for making my stay a memorable one. I would also like to thank the security, the police did a fantastic job. Thanks to (Haryana Cricket Association Secretary) Anirudh Chaudhary for making my stay comfortable, a big thank you to the Lahli crowd and thanks for all the support and love over the years," Tendulkar said.
"I really appreciate every bit of your support and good wishes. Thank you very much for making this match a memorable one," he added.
Asked what tips did he give to the youngsters who batted alongside him, Tendulkar said: "I share basically whatever I see from the non-strikers end, not that it always work but it`s fun."
"I mean it`s all about talking cricket, getting to know about each other, getting to know what the bowlers are trying to do. If I see something, I share my observation with them and nothing more than that," he explained.
"We generally chat and it`s about keeping each other relaxed. All the time you are focusing, sometimes you drain yourself, so it is important to switch off a little in between," Tendulkar added.