India Today Conclave 2023
Sports : Cheer
Sachinism and the Idea of India: How Sports Carved a Hero and How Sports Can Change the Country. Some pages from the personal diary of a hero
Sachin Tendulkar, Cricket Hero, Little Master
Nearly a decade has passed since he retired after playing his 200th Test in November 2013, but when he spoke at the India Today Conclave, it was realized that no one can sense the pulse of the game better than the ‘Little Master’.
Sachin attracted everyone’s attention with his fresh ideas. From ways to establish Test matches as the ‘number 1 format’ of cricket, he spoke on the new format of One Day Internationals (ODIs) which are constantly ‘unusable’. The cricket legend spoke at length on various aspects of the game, but his appeal to strike a balance between batsmen and bowlers was heartwarming.
Yes, yes, the man who has 100 international hundreds to his credit and has spent many sleepless nights in awe of the great bowlers of his era, was taking the side of the bowlers. When this irony was pointed out, the quick reply was, “I have taken a good number of wickets, so I would prefer to be called a bowler…” What kind of bowler was he? Sachin laughed and said, “… I am still finding out.”
The subject which he touched upon, exists. His views not only increased the knowledge, but also threw light on those aspects of the game, which need to be looked into immediately.
He told that in T20 and ODI the balance is tilted towards the batsmen, hence the idea of encouraging the bowlers was put forward. He admitted that there is nothing to be happy about the trend of Test matches (due to the bowlers being able to finish in three days). According to Sachin, what matters is that the game should be fun and the audience should like it.
Sachin also has many tips to make the game fun. For example, the use of spit to maintain the shine of the ball, which was banned during Kovid-19. With a condition (I am not a medical expert), Sachin told how in this way bowlers produced swing for almost 100 years and why it is needed.
As expected from the ‘God of Cricket’, the analysis of the game was unique insight and fresh thinking, but it was really shocking to see his amazing memory. When he was asked about several incidents of his dismissal, he not only remembered it accurately, but also told how he felt then.
For example, when he was dismissed by Ian Botham against England in the 1992 World Cup match (“I didn’t like his attitude when I got Botham out, so I was a bit annoyed”). It was a wonderful moment when the ‘Master Blaster’ recreated the 2003 World Cup scene with bat in his hand when he hit an upper cut shot off Shoaib Akhtar for a six.
- In the short format of the game, the balance is tilted towards the batsmen, so at least in the Test itself, give such facilities to the bowlers, so that the spectators are attracted towards the big format.
- At present, ODI of 50 overs has become pointless. Sachin suggests having four sessions of 25 overs each, with both teams playing alternately
- There is a need to strike a proper balance between bowlers and batsmen. Allowing an extra fielder outside the tight circle in ODIs and spitting to shine the ball
- The era of women players has also come in India. They have the infrastructure and platform to showcase their talent. Its results will also be visible soon
- Sachin’s memory is amazing. Talk to him about his 781st international innings and he will tell you how he got out.
If a Test match doesn’t go on for five days but the game is fun, then this is the only thing that will keep cricket alive.
Whenever there is a bat in hand, then all seriousness should be shown. It shouldn’t be just for fun. Whenever you represent India, nothing should be taken lightly.
There is no doubt that ODIs have started becoming unfair… In the current format, there is injustice with the bowlers.