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Tendulkar is Indian Air Force's poster boy

cricket Updated: Jan 01, 2011 02:18 IST
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Sachin Tendulkar, an inspiration for millions of Indians because of his feats in cricket, can now be seen in IAF fatigues along with the Sukhoi fighter aircraft in the force's 2011 calendar.

The cricket icon, who was recently conferred the honorary rank of Group Captain, features in the calendar wearing a green flying suit with helmet tucked under his left arm.

Sachin appears on the 'January' page of the calendar with an air superiority fighter Su-30MKI in the background, the aircraft which he is likely to be flying in after returning from the ongoing cricket series in South Africa.

Interestingly, Sachin is the only person appearing in the calendar which otherwise carries the pictures of various fighter planes and transport aircraft of the IAF.

The IAF said Sachin had been featured in the calendar to spread awareness about the force among the youth.

"He is a national hero and youth relate with him. Sachin's association with the IAF will also help in spreading awareness about the force," an IAF official said.

On September 3, the IAF conferred the honorary rank of Group Captain on Sachin for his cricketing achievements and contribution to the nation.

Sachin is the first sportsperson to be conferred a rank by IAF and the first personality with no aviation background to receive the honour.

"It's a great pleasure and honour to be honoured by IAF. It was a wishful thinking and it has come true today. I'm extremely proud to be a part of IAF. I want to urge the youth to join air force and serve the nation. So dream, because dreams do come true," he had said after receiving the honour.