Sachin: Kohli an all-time great

Sachin said that Virat is one of the leading cricketers at this moment, but doesn't believe in comparisons.

"I always saw that spark in him (Kohli). I always felt that he is going to be one of the leading players in the world," Sachin said.   -  Vivek Bendre

Sachin Tendulkar’s records that once looked staggering and seemingly unsurpassable are being rewritten by Virat Kolhi, something that has amazed the icon, who on Thursday called the Team India captain one of the leading players in the world.

Kohli recently surpassed Tendulkar to become the fastest player to score 10,000 ODI runs. He is also inching towards Tendulkar’s record for highest number of ODI hundreds (49), having notched his 38th ton in Pune in the third game against West Indies.

“Coming to Virat’s development as a player, I think he has developed immensely. And I always saw that spark in him. I always felt that he is going to be one of the leading players in the world, not just of this generation, but one of the leading players of all time,” Tendulkar told reporters here.

“And then it is again about opinions. But if one has to go into comparisons, then I don’t want to get into that. There were different bowlers who played in 60s, 70s, 80s, and possibly in my time and what they are playing today. So I wouldn’t want to get into that,” he said.

The little master was speaking at the first India camp of the Tendulkar Middlesex Global Academy at the DY Patil Stadium.

Vinod Kambli, the former Indian batsman and his childhood friend, was also at the stadium mentoring the kids.

Tendulkar categorically stressed that he did not believe in comparisons.

— 'Do not believe in comparisons' —

“I think first of all, like how Virat has said and I have been saying for 24 years that I have played. I have never believed in comparisons," he said.

“Each generation played differently, there were different rules, there were different restrictions, there were different surfaces, there were different balls also at times. I personally don’t feel one should be comparing different generations."

“But within a generation also, I personally believe there should not be any comparison because every player needs to be respected and judged as an individual, it doesn’t have to be always judged by comparing someone and I don’t believe in that,” Tendulkar added.

He praised teenage prodigy Prithvi Shaw, terming the right-handed batsman a quick learner.

Shaw starting his Test career on a high by scoring a hundred in the first Test against West Indies in Rajkot.

“I think I can talk about Prithvi. I have never given my opinion on selection, whether who should be picked and who should be dropped. And I would like to maintain it that way, because that is like influencing the selectors to do something. But if I have to look at Prithvi as a player, he’s progressed tremendously.

“I feel with age he is only going to get better and better. So Prithvi is someone who will continue to perform well. Yes, the Australian tour is going to be a good exposure for him. And from what I have seen, he is fast learner. So I suppose he is ready for that.

“I think he has performed well in all formats. So when you are suited for all formats you can perform well,” said Tendulkar when asked whether he would like to see Shaw in ODIs.