Is Tendulkar the greatest batsman of all time? – My Letters – THE NATIONAL – Dt 03 March 2010

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My Letters – THE NATIONAL – Dt 03 March 2010 – Is Tendulkar the greatest batsman of all time?

When Wisden, the most traditional medium to record the sport of cricket, compiled a list of top 100 knocks in Test cricket, Sachin Tendulkar did not figure in any of them.

Wisden then explained the criteria that none of his knocks were either match-winning ones or those which were did not have enough authority in terms of the match situation to deserve a mention. Now hundred is quite a number but still the man with the highest total of runs in Test as well as one-day formats individually did not figure on that chart.

In ODIs, Tendulkar has scored two hundreds against the top team in Australia in 1998, one to ensure that India made the final and then the second to take the title away from Steve Waugh’s men.

A decade later, Tendulkar has had another marvellous season with a brilliant 175 against the all-dominating Australians and has followed it up with an unbeaten 200 against the second-ranked South Africans.

The first to break the 200-run barrier and that too in style, a chanceless innings despite his growing years, Tendulkar’s knock is another factor for those who cannot decide in the debate of The Greatest between him and Sir Donald Bradman just because they belonged to two different eras.

Has the Gwalior knock in the second one-day international on February 24, 2010 helped make up your mind on this?

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My comments as follows:

The way he played this match in which he got to his 200 runs says it all. No doubt, he is the greatest batsman of all time. It will take some time for the contemporary batsman to reach his level of execution. There were legends before, including Sir Don Bradman. However, they played in an era, when cricket was played at a leisurely pace and not many matches were scheduled like these days. Demands, the pace, expectations were all entirely different in those days. To withstand all those and to deliver something unexpected each time to the cricketing fans, shows his creative talent on the cricketing field. The way he picked up those 200 runs at will proves it once and for all, Sachin Tendulkar is the greatest batsman of all time.