Monday, December 12, 2005

Thirty Five

Going by the title, please don't be expecting a thirty-five word story here. It's about this number that has been creating waves in the media over last two days.

This particular figure equals the number of centuries SachinTendulkar has scored so far in Test Cricket.

It is a great achievement, to say the least and it's beyond reach for even the greatest, to say the most. Sachin Tendulkar is our hero since our childhood days, we have seen him in his curly hair, hitting Abdul Quadir for sixers, we have seen him stand tall in the sand storm of Sharjah twice to blow away the Aussies, we have seen his emotional century against Keniya in the 1999 world cup, we have seen him bowl the famous last over at Eden Gardens --- Sachin is our buddy. He is deeply integrated in our lives - be it Boost-is-the-secret-of-my-energy smile, or Airtel-express-yourself campaign, he is all over.

Yet, look at the way the media has been "celebrating" his success. SMS some-damn-number to say congratulations to Sachin personally --- as if he is going to send a personalised thank-you reply immediately. "What is your message for your father?", his 4-5 year old kid is being asked. And what is he to answer, "Papa, please bring me a chocolate!" ?? His caretaker or aayaa is being asked lots and lots of questions, then why should we be surprised at such interviews with his family members! TOI's entire front page was dedicated to Sachin's accomplishment the other day : it can be mistaken for popularity I guess. I feel, it's all about sales of the newspaper, nothing more or nothing less than that. To tell you the truth, there was no expert's comment on his play which I would have liked to read, instead they came up with 35 personal things (a few of them quite personal) you-need-to-know-about-Sachin kind of textbox!

There is no denying the fact that he is one of the greatest cricketers ever, and probably (a matter of debate actually) the best batsman (only next to Sir D Bradman). Such stories, and news items give a feeling of swelling. Such 'gossip'y articles are really insulting his achievement I feel.

In passing, hey media, Sachin lives in our hearts, please don't try make us wear glossy T-shirts with His photo on it: it's not necessary.

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