Thursday, June 13, 2024

Kolkata eagerly awaits Sachin’s 100th ton


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KOLKATA: Will he? Won’t he? That’s the question local cricket buffs find most intriguing as they pray Sachin Tendulkar reaches the much-awaited milestone of a century of international tons during the second Test against the West Indies at the historic Eden Gardens, a ground that the batting genius had once called the “home of cricket”.

India play the West Indies in the second Test from November 14-18.

After scoring a century in the Cape Town Test against South Africa, Sachin has failed to play even one triple figure knock in the 11 Test innings where he has come to the middle, the highest being 91 at The Oval during India’s disastrous English tour in summer.

However, he did get two ODI hundreds during this time – 120 against England at Bangalore and 111 facing South Africa in Nagpur. The last one came March 12.

It was almost 22 years back that a shy 16-year old boy with curly hair and an ocean of talent made his international debut in the Karachi Test against Pakistan, with cricketing experts like Sunil Gavaskar prophesying the advent of a player capable of breaking all batting records that one can think of.

Years later, the legendary Don Bradman – considered the greatest batsmen of all times – asked his wife to take a look at the Indian as he felt Tendulkar played like him. It was Tendulkar’s technique, compactness, and shot production that endeared him most to the Aussie, according to Roland Perry, who authored the book “Don’s Best”.

Fifty-one centuries in 182 Test matches and 48 in 453 ODIs is ample testimony of the visionary qualities of these wise men.

But the one century – that would make the little Mumbaikar the first ever batsman in 138 years of international cricket history to complete a historic feat of 100 tons – has been on wait for eight months. And Kolkatans are hoping it will be at the Eden, a ground where Tendulkar has got only two tons in 10 Tests. His average a tad below 50, as opposed to 56.14 overall in Tests. (IANS)


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