20 years of glorious cricket, prodigious feats, perseverance that matches only those of a few and a simplicity that is contagious. My understanding about Sachin is limited to this and I am equally sure that whatever little I understand about Sachin is worthy of being a huge reservoir of learning.
Let me share my learning from this great cricketer-
- Humbleness: I recently read one of his quote 'Statistically, I have passed Don Bradman but I can't be compared with him.' This speaks volumes about this man. Did Don Bradman score most number of runs, most number of hundreds, did he play for 20 long years????? Well the answer is 'No'. But does Don Bradman deserve this much respect from Sachin???? The answer is 'Yes!! Certainly'. A lot of players won't give a monkey toss to such legends but Sachin is different. He is 'rightfully' different. He is as great as Sir Don Bradman if not more. [I hope Sreesanth is reading this post ;-)].
- Dream with the right purposeful action: He has often been quoted saying that it was his dream to become an Indian Cricketer. One of his special moment still remains his debut match against Pakistan where even his opponents found him promising. Wearing the Indian cap was not the end. It was a beginning to a journey that still delights fans like me 20 glorious years later.
- Team spirit: Sachin played some of his best knocks under the captaincy of cricketers who joined the team much later like Saurav [my favorite], Dravid, Dhoni etc. but he still played his game with great passion and tenacity. He rates his 98 runs scored against Pakistan during the World Cup that was very instrumental in India's win as one of his best knocks. His individual interest never superseded his team's success. Team always came first.
- Focus: Consider this quote 'I hate losing and cricket being my first love, once I enter the ground it's a different zone altogether and that hunger for winning is always there.' I feel he lives this statement every time he comes on the field. I am sure he would not have lived this statement without lazor sharp focus.
- Do your best and leave the rest to God: Now consider this statement ' I just keep it simple. I watch the ball and play it on merit. I want to give my six hours of serious cricket on the ground and then take whatever the result.' In any profession, it is important not to complicate oneself with too many thoughts. Success in flawless execution lies in simplicity in thoughts and great belief in translating those thoughts into action. Sachin personifies that.
- Right amount of preparation is the key: I always felt that Sachin's confidence comes from his impeccable and sincere preparation. This quote sums it up again ' At least with me, the match starts much, much earlier than the actual match.'
- Don't complain, rather work on the next opportunity: There are number of times Sachin has been declared out for no valid reasons [most of them being LBWs, a few run outs and that catch by Jonty Rhodes]. But he came back stronger in the next few matches. He did complain but through his bat.
Jai Ho Sachin!!!!!!!!
Note: Quotes and the photo was obtained from www.rediff.com and http://www.sachintendulkar.in