Tendulkar - A gentleman to the core

Dhanraj Pillay paid glowing tributes to Sachin Tendulkar as the legendary Indian batsman announced his decision to retire from the game after playing his 200th Test in Mumbai against the West Indies.

“I don’t think we can see another Sachin in cricket. A fantastic achiever, he had his feet firmly on the ground. His records speak for themselves. He deserves all the respect he is getting,” Dhanraj said.

Dhanraj recalled his friendship with Sachin. “We keep talking to each other regularly. He is a terrific human being, always approachable and with no airs at all,” he remarked.

The former India centre-forward said that unlike him, who had quite a few run-ins with the Indian hockey officialdom, Sachin was a gentleman to the core. “The fact that Sachin stayed away from controversies despite playing the sport at the highest level for close to 25 years is a tribute to his impeccable credentials,” he observed.

“Definitely, God has been kind enough to Sachin, for everything he touched turned into gold. This is again a reflection of his great commitment over a long period. I don’t think any modern-day sportsperson can last more than a decade now for different reasons,” he remarked.

Dhanraj finally blamed the media for Sachin’s retirement. “It is the media that put so much pressure on him by debating, day-in and day-out, on this subject. Honestly, I feel he is still good enough for two more years of cricket,” he remarked.

“Now, I can only pray that Arjun (Sachin’s son) will carry on the legacy of his illustrious father,” Dhanraj added.