Thought Box

Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar – An Innings That Will Never End

Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar – An Innings That Will Never End

by Hans Kapadia November 14 2013, 12:16 pm Estimated Reading Time: 4 mins, 44 secs

Today Sachin Tendulkar will emerge from the dressing room to a packed house at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai to join MS Dhoni and team to don his Indian cricket whites for the last time. 
Chants of Saaachin…Sachin will fill the air and create a sense of euphoria that will mimic and might even surpass the atmosphere present at the same stadium when India lifted the cricket world cup in 2011. The West Indian National Cricket Team has decided to give the master blaster a guard of honour and one may feel that every Indian will be on their feet to give Sachin the respect that he has truly earned over a career spanning close to 24 years.

The hype of Sachin’s retirement has caught onto every facet of the media. The news channels in the country have all optimised their content to gain from the maestro’s retirement. Sports channels have also created specialised content showcasing the little master’s life on and off the field. Any Indian to tune into these channels, be it today or even ten days from now can gain an in depth insight into Tendulkar’s life, if they already didn’t know everything about it. There are pundits, ex-cricketers, sports analysts, politicians and even astrologists trying to comment on aspects of Sachin’s career and how Indian cricket and sports will change once he hangs up his boots. The real question
is, what will Sachin do once he is no longer required to put on his batting pads and go knock a century?

Sachin has become a household name today. His sheer determination to break through in the Indian squad in his teens has become a story of dreams for individuals across the country. His hard work and dedication in his line of work is a true representation of his moral character and grit and is one factor that all Indians wish to strive for. The humility and grace through which Sachin has carried himself in the last 24 years, despite his fans constantly referring to him as GOD shows that he is a man that understands the concept of power, and chooses not to assert his ‘power over’ but rather wants to be a man that gives ‘power to’ the people.

The answer is that Sachin can be the change that the country requires. He has the power to galvanize a billion people. With his recent political status as a member of the Rajya Sabha, Sachin can go a long way into addressing issues that are faced by the so many million individuals that speak of him as GOD. The fact that he is not a representative of any political party will show him as an objective figure ready to take India’s ever-growing social challenges head on. Another question that comes to mind is, how would the present political parties perceive Tendulkar if he truly was to take up a political agenda? Political parties would go out of their way to try and envelope him in their leagues as Sachin’s appeal spreads across a pan-India demographic, a reach that no single political party can claim to have today. It would be interesting to see his political leanings, if he has any, and the kind of effect it would have on his fan following and for the political party that he chooses to support. If he decides to choose a party, would opponents of that party be ready to take Sachin head on? In a country where politics and scandals are synonymous, Sachin might put his clean image at
risk – one that he has built through his entire career by staying away from the lures of match fixers and BCCI politicos.

After such a long and tiring career plagued by many injuries, constantly hoarded by fans for autographs and having every move of his criticized by the media, it would be fair if Sachin decided to live a peaceful quiet life with his wife and children outside the public eye, but would he be content with such a life knowing that he harnesses the power to create widespread change. Didier Drogba, the Ivorian footballer known for his powerful free-kicks and inhuman strength on the football field was one the foremost factors for stopping civil war in Ivory Coast by instinctively picking up the microphone one day after a local football game and speaking to the nation on national television and pleading the warring factions to lay down their arms. One week later, at a football match between the White Elephants and Madagascar, the leaders of the two factions were both present and stood united for the National anthem before the kick-off. Such is the power of iconic sportsmen. It may be said that even film-stars that have been loved by the masses in India have taken to the political stage and have the power to create such change, but till now none have been able to do it.

Sachin has led us on the cricket field to many fine victories, facing some of the toughest bowling attacks in the world but will he be able the lead India on the political front and stand up to the many bouncers that will be thrown at him by some of the political heavyweights and hit them for a six, if he chooses to? Only time will tell.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of The writers are solely responsible for any claims arising out of the contents of this article.