24th April, 1973 – the day when arguably, the best cricketer ever to have walked the cricket pitch took birth. On the account of his 44th Birthday, we shall take a sneak peak on how the master, The God of Cricket Sachin Tendulkar has been an inspiration to millions and billions of people in India and around the globe.
When I was a toddler, few children admired batman, superman, spiderman and other cartoon characters as their super heroes. But for me and millions others, Sachin Tendulkar was the living, legendary super hero we admired and tried to follow. The God of Cricket could be compared to none! If I talk about his statistics and in-game performances, it wouldn’t do justice to the great man’s stature, for he is not only loved for the player he used to be, he is loved for the amazing person he has been! The great man has taught me and the world 100s of things and has become an inspiration, a deserving role model everyone must follow. Here are 10 life lessons that Sachin Tendulkar, The God of Cricket has taught the world with his bat.
Age is just a number
A 16 year old kid walked on a green pitch against the best assembled bowling unit ever from Pakistan after more than half of the Indian batting had been destroyed. On the edge of losing the game, the kid was hit by a bouncer right on his nose by one of the most feared bowlers of all time – Waqar Younis. Bleeding terribly, feeling the heat of an India Pakistan game and under the pressure of his first test series, he refused any kind of medical attention and urged to stay on and bat. The very next ball, he struck that bowler down the ground for a boundary. He later went on to score his maiden half century and saved his side from a defeat. That day, the world became aware of a 16 year old legend in the game dominated by people twice his age. He taught the world that age is just a number. Your character defines you.
Talent is nothing without hard work
Ever since he took the bat in his hand, people who saw him understood that he was born to play cricket. But perhaps that was not enough. No doubt he was a gifted child, but he became the best only by sheer hard work. He used to bat 18 hours a day in his early teenage days: that showed his intent to become the best. He taught us that no matter how gifted we are, without working hard, nothing is achievable in life.
Love and respect your profession
Playing the game for so long as he did and the number of matches he played; with the same dedication throughout is simply incomparable. Not only did he love the sport, he even respected it. Remember him bowing down to the 22 yard Wankhade pitch in his farewell game? This image speaks a lot about the God of Cricket and his temple.
You don’t stop improving, even if you are The God of Cricket!
He showed the world that there’s always a scope to improve even if you are the best! In his prolonged career, he was never for practice sessions, NEVER! He always tried to improve his game and practiced hard to not repeat his mistakes. His 241* vs Australia in Sydney is the best example for this. He was constantly getting out on that Australian tour by attempting shots on the off side. But in this inning against Australia, he did not hit a single shot on the off side till he reached 100 odd runs and went to score 241! Talk about improvements? That is perhaps the reason why he was able to dominate the game for over 2 decades on the trot! The way he changed his game after the Tennis Elbow Injury is another commendable feat.
Never back down!
2004 was one of the darkest years for the master. Suffering from tennis elbow, his career seemed to be over. He couldn’t even pick up a cup of tea and his son’s plastic bat. But it is said, when going gets tough, the toughs get going! He returned back to cricket to break the records which were destined to be broken only by him. He has played with injuries, surgeries and immense pain all this while, but never he never said die. Not only this, but he had some of his best cricketing years post the tennis elbow injury which is even more mesmerizing. He changed his game completely to suit his body and became only better!
Respect your rivals
Even though cricket is a gentlemen’s game, sledging is pretty normal. Many opponents tried sledging Sachin to break his concentration while he was batting, because getting him out just by good bowling was not an easy task. However, whenever he was sledged, he was known to remain quiet, but well, he used to make big statements with his bat! Remember how he bashed Andrew Caddick in the 2003 World Cup against England after his statements against Sachin and the Indian team?
Always remain humble, no matter how successful you become
He is known to be one of the most humble and down to earth sportsman. Even though he has every major batting record under his belt, even though he has been termed ‘The God of Cricket’, Bharat Ratna awardee Sachin Tendulkar has never had any controversy throughout his career and has always been loved by one and all for his humble, down to earth nature. Carrying that attitude after probably achieving everything one could achieve in his profession simply shows how great his stature is!
So many times he has walked off the field even without waiting for the umpire to give him out, even though he had been dismissed more than 39 times due to umpiring errors in his entire career! That speaks a lot about him. He has always been honest on the field and played the game fair and square. A true sport, an honest person, a perfect role model, that’s Sachin for you! Still wonder why he’s called the God of Cricket?
“When people throw stones at you, turn them into milestones”
That is exactly what he did for 24 years. He was criticized time and again for every single failure of the team. He has faced the burden of expectations and criticism hand-in-hand every single time he walked out to bat for India. But every time his skills were doubted, he responded his critics in the best possible way: by winning games for India and creating records.
“Chase your dreams, dreams too come true”
He taught a billion to dream. He taught them to chase. He taught them to conquer. He waited for 22 years to fulfill his dream of winning the world cup; but in the end he did achieve it. He was the highest run scorer and 2nd highest overall in the 2011 World Cup which India one, which shows how hard he worked for it. Remember the sadness on his face when he went on to collect the player of the tournament award in 2003 World Cup after India lost the final? That shows how badly he wanted India to win the World Cup.
Sachin may have retired from the sport, but he will definitely never retire from our hearts. He has been the living super hero for every Indian and every cricket lover. Long live Sachin!