Benefit of doubt

Sachin Tendulkar

I don’t believe he wants this, I don’t think he should go, what I think sadly amounts to nada; he’s not coming back. As Sachin leaves the ODIs for good, I am loath to wonder many amoral, slightly boorish questions: why retire today? Why not play against Pakistan to try and find some semblance of form? Arguably the two best bowling outfits in the world are going to be gunning for your throat in the upcoming months, on hostile foreign wickets no less. You can’t play like you did against England and expect to score against Steyn and the like? Or can you? We’re all suckers for surprise, but the way it’s been going you wouldn’t bet your life on the 101st anytime soon. Sachin’s always had one form of the game to fall back on during his woeful spates of batting form in the other, is he now just going to walk into the field and blaze into a flurry of boundaries on his way to yet another test century against Australia come February, on the back of such a dismal year? We sure do hope so.

Sachin is a creature who can turn the worst cynics to optimists; but even his retirement can’t detract from what smells so foul here. The timing speaks for itself. Our Government imposes Section 144 and seizes our right to congregate for rightful cause, forces us to lament our demigod’s decision, impels us to watch the world bemoan its profound loss. Thankfully, it hasn’t worked. My mind takes me to unhealthy spaces; is the government recruiting? Sachin is already part of the upper house of parliament and any political party in its right mind knows the influence of the little master; ignores it at their peril. They also know the task of re-election in the 2014 general elections is going to be herculean, why not then employ and deploy Hercules himself? If this is true, Sachin can coolly go to South Africa in November and calmly get back to retire from tests in January 2014, just in time for the election campaigns.

I read back what I just wrote; quiver a bit from the chill and the thrill, realise what I just did. These are uncharted waters; never have I doubted Sachin’s decisions before, for I am a believer of his grit, passion and humility. He is a team player, a patriot and his decisions have always reflected that. I am not going let this dubiousness crop up today. I will not let this Government belittle what is important, corrupt my thoughts and malign the ethereal vision I have of the master blaster. Sachin is going, because that is what is best for the Indian Cricket team. The benefit of the doubt will always go to the batsman!

The world we knew ended today, the Mayans were off just by a couple of days.


A tribute


A profound sense of loss; the worst sinking feeling I’ve ever had; Rahul Dravid retired from all forms of the game yesterday! Opening the newspaper today, reading the wonderful kind words people wrote for him makes you realise what we’re going to miss so incredibly. What a true Gentleman of the Game he’s been, how long he’s held that mantle, how many of us he’s inspired, how much confidence he’s instilled in all of us, how much he’s taught us. He embodies the true meaning of a hero, there’s never been and there never will be another Rahul Dravid, you will be missed deeply and fondly Sir! I only pray that you are around for those who will be trying to fill your big shoes now! Wish you the best in all your future endeavours.