Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sachin and the 200th Test

It's already been blown beyond proportion. He has already said that he is not bigger than the game. However it is like religion. There are many out there who are willing to tell god what he really meant when he walked the earth - they know better you see. They also know that by twisting their version they can make an extra buck.

If there has to be a celebration to mark his exit, it needs to be handled in a manner worthy of the man. He led himself quietly, modestly and in an understated manner for all these years. Let the celebrations, at least the official ones, reflect the same class and leave a smile on his face, a memory that makes his long journey worthwhile. For that of course you need people of class and I wonder where you will find that rare species in this arena. I do hope they get involved before they make a tamasha out of it all.

Sachin had to retire sometime or the other. But from what I see in the papers many people are almost saying they will stop their televisions or give up watching cricket after Sachin. I hope they regain some perspective and get on with their lives. He will. And that is where we need to focus on.

It is not so much about the fans as about Sachin himself that one must train the thoughts to. He will find this the toughest phase of his life. To consciously step of an arena to which he devoted more number of hours than most have, to give up something that has been his lifeblood for all these years, is simply a frightening prospect.  The silence, the solitude, the quiet will take some time to get used to. And this is where one feels the most for Sachin.

Many super stars have become recluses after retiring. But I have a feeling Sachin may not go out of public eye. He would make a wonderful teacher, speaker. One would certainly urge him to read, write and share more. A Ph.D. in sports excellence won't be a bad idea. He certainly can use his wonderful brand equity as an achiever to influence the youth on the route to excellence, not merely the fruits of it on which the young can get addicted to.

Of course business can also be as heady as cricket, but it has limited returns in terms of love, satisfaction and contentment. The most satisfying avenue is public service whichever way he chooses to take to it. That is the way to finish what he began and become a true hero for his country.


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