Considered to be one of the greatest batters to have graced the sport of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar took to YouTube to give everyone an insight into one of the most underrated moments of his playing career. During his long career, the Team India legend also contributed with the ball in his younger days. One such moment came in the 1993 Hero Cup semi-final against South Africa at Eden Gardens (Kolkata), which Tendulkar labelled as an “unbelievable” highlight in his legendary career. During the semifinal against South Africa, India needed to defend six runs in the final over and much to the excitement of fans, India captain Mohammed Azharuddin handed the ball to Tendulkar in that crucial moment. What added to the drama was that Tendulkar hadn’t bowled a single over in that match until the 50th over.
The Master Blaster went on to concede only three runs and helped India seal a famous victory.
Speaking via his YouTube channel, the 48-year-old revealed, “I remember I hadn’t bowled at all till the 50th over, not a single ball I had bowled so and because it was a bit chilly, you know my body was stiff, my fingers were also stiff and you know I had actually taken a lot of time to warm up.”
“When we met in the middle, I told Azhar that I am more than happy to bowl and I am confident that I can bowl this over and then it was decided that I would bowl. I had just made a suggestion that I am confident to bowl the last over, if you want me to bowl, I’m okay”, he continued.
Giving an insight into the match situation, he explained, “Once it was decided then I said okay fine. I’m trying to hit the ball on my fingers and then I am warming up because every ball mattered. Every run mattered there. But the way the crowd was with us was incredible, you know. Each dot ball was appreciated, unbelievably and that sort of mounted pressure on them.”
Sachin further revealed that until the last over, India wicketkeeper Vijay Yadav was standing right behind the stumps. But after further discussion with Sachin, Yadav decided to go further back for the final delivery.
“When the last ball was to be bowled, till then the keeper was standing right up to the stumps. In the last ball, Vijay Yadav came to me and said what do you think of the last ball, what are you going to bowl. I said I am obviously going to bowl a yorker. So, finally we decided that the keeper has to go back because if there is an inside edge, the keeper can obviously stop and actually there was an inside edge.”
“The keeper stopped the ball. I don’t think it would have gone for a boundary but still I mean we didn’t want to take that chance. Keeper was standing back and once we won that match, it was just unbelievable”, he said.
Furthermore, thanking the fans for their part in the match, Sachin concluded, “The way people celebrated inside the stadium even while going from the stadium back to the hotel. People were going mad in the stadium and that kind of feeling was unbelievable, you know. You play cricket for all those moments and then once again a big thank you to all the people from Kolkata.”
After the semifinal win, India went on to face West Indies in the final and won the match by 102 runs. The match also saw legendary batter Brian Lara play a knock of 33 off 47 balls. Meanwhile, Anil Kumble hogged the spotlight, taking six wickets in 6.1 overs.
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