'Didn't know about Tendulkar. It was Saqlain who told me about his stature': Pakistan legend's big claim on India great

Published on Aug 15, 2022 07:06 AM IST

The former Pakistan star made a huge claim on Sachin Tendulkar as he talked about his playing days.

Sachin Tendulkar(Getty )
Sachin Tendulkar(Getty )

Team India will face Pakistan in a blockbuster clash in the men's Asia Cup game on August 28. Both sides will be meeting for the first time since the T20 World Cup match last year where the Babar Azam-led side registered a magnificent 10-wicket win. Over the past many years, the games between India and Pakistan are restricted to global (ICC) and continental (Asia Cup) tournaments, owing to political tensions between both nations.

Both sides share a rich cricketing history, and the rivalry between India's batting great Sachin Tendulkar and Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar is, perhaps, the most famous of all. The two have met on the cricket field on many occasions and while both share a healthy respect for each other, their rivalry on the field remained significantly intense.

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However, Akhtar has now revealed that when he emerged in the cricketing scene, he didn't truly know the stature of Tendulkar in world cricket. In fact, it was his fellow teammate and Pakistan spin great Saqlain Mushtaq who told him about Tendulkar.

“Saqlain told me about Sachin Tendulkar and his stature. I didn't know about him. I was lost in my own world. I didn't know. I only knew what I will do and what the batter was thinking,” Akhtar said in a video posted by Star Sports on Sunday.

Further speaking about his mindset during the conversation, Akhtar said that he only thought about bowling fast and winning the match for his country.

“The big difference between your fast bowlers and ours was that we used to look for excuses to bowl fast. Whenever I used to realise that the ball is reverse-swinging, I thought, 'If I get a spell here, I will run through the batters'. I will just take the five wickets there and win the match for Pakistan. You can't be a star without being a match-winner. We used to win games for the country,” Akhtar said.

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