Arguably cricket's biggest icon, Sachin Tendulkar turned 36 on Friday and said he still feels like a boy of 16. The right-hander, bracketed in the same league with the legendary Don Bradman, is currently leading the Mumbai Indians in the ongoing Indian Premier League in South Africa. "I feel like 16. I think it's the good wishes and blessings that count," he said. "It's not about breaking records. It's about winning matches. It's a terrific feeling to win and that's what matters," Tendulkar said after cutting the birthday cake in company of his Mumbai Indians teammates. Worshipped in India and equally revered across the world, Tendulkar made his debut at 16 against Pakistan before growing into a batsman who has given nightmares to bowlers across the cricketing globe. Tendulkar said his career stats, which show more than 12,000 Test and over 16,000 ODI runs don't matter much in comparison to being part of a winning team. "Stats are merely a reflection of an individual's contribution to the team. Ultimately it's a team sport and though individual performances matter, it's more about winning matches," he said. Tendulkar will be joined by his wife and kids in the birthday celebrations in Durban.," he said. Sachin Tendulkar will today also become the first Indian cricketer whose figure will be on display at Madame Tussauds, after West Indies’ Brian Lara, Australia’s Shane Warne and England’s Sir Ian Botham.
Sachin has not changed his playing style: Achrekar Sachin Tendulkar turns 36 today but his chilhood coach Ramakant Achrekar says nothing has changed in his iconic ward in last over two decades, not even his style of playing. "He used to attack and still go after the bowlers. He never got terrorised by any bowler in the world. What has changed, nothing. He is still like this," Achrekar told PTI-Bhasha on the eve of Tendulkar's birthday. "He is the same Sachin for me. He is very busy but never forgets to meet me and talk about cricket, cricket and cricket. Cricket is his passion and I wish him on his birthday that this passion remains the same," he said. The 78-year-old Archrekar felt Tendulkar, who debuted as 16-year-old in 1989, could play in the 2011 World Cup. "He can play World Cup 2011. He has one unfulfilled dream to win the World Cup. So is mine," said the coach. Tendulkar is the world's leading run scorer with 12,773 runs from 159 Tests and 16,684 in 425 ODI, besides holding an umpteen number of cricketing records. Tendulkar, who was recently immortalised in the Madam Tussaud's wax museum, had said he had three teachers in his life -- his father, brother and coach Achrekar. Achrekar said he was more than happy with the success of his favourite student and felt that he had given him the real "Gurudakshina" (fees) by following his lessons till date. "I always knew that he will achieve each and every thing in cricket. I got my 'Gurudakshina' the day he became the best batsman in the world. Now I have only one desire left that he wins world cup for the country," he said. Despite his illness, Achrekar is following Tendulkar-led Mumbai Indians' run in the ongoing IPL and quite impressed with the way Tendulkar is playing. "Sachin is playing really well in the IPL. He has the potential to be the numero uno in Twenty20 cricket as well. He can play all forms of the game and despite being on the pinnacle he never hesitates to learn. This is his plus point." said the veteran coach. Achrekar also said Tendulkar's dedication towards the game was exemplary. "During his school days Sachin used to practice for hours in Shivaji Park. He would spend days to learn a single shot. That is the reason that no other batsman has variety like him. He is the all time best batsman in world cricket," said Achrekar, going down the memory lane. There is a famous tale that Achrekar used to keep a coin on the stumps during practice. The bowler who got Tendulkar out would get it and if Tendulkar remained not out throughout the inning, he earned it. Tendulkar has 13 such coins with him and considers those as his most precious gifts. (PTI)
Sachin with wife Anjali
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