Tendulkar: A retirement or a century?
Will BBCI put its foot down or will Sachin be able reverse the charm and not lose face?
Every cricket lover will agree that Sachin Tendulkar is indeed a legend. He has been one of the best batsmen, the most prolific run maker and arguably the biggest cricket icon the game has ever known.
Let's recap his achievements.
Tendulkar is not only the man with the most runs under his belt (over 15,000 in Tests and over 18,000 in ODIs), he is also the first cricketer to score 200 runs in an ODI. With the increasing trend of T20 cricket, it seems that his record for the most runs in ODIs and Test matches will stay with him forever.
But now there's a peculiarity.
It all started in Nagpur, when Tendulkar made 111 of 101 balls in the ICC World Cup 2011 match against South Africa. People started to talk about his 100th international century. Since that day, this legend has batted in nine ODI innings and 22 Test innings and he is still trying his best to reach the 100th international century.
Why does this sound so odd? Because he has a record of scoring a century on average in every seventh innings in Test matches and a century in every ninth innings in ODI matches; and it has now been 31 innings and he is still going on - without his one hundredth.
Now the Indian line up has Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina and Virat Kohli for ODIs along with other top performers like C Pujara, Manoj Tiwari who are still waiting in line to get a game. But they can’t - because Sachin is looking for his 100th International century.
How long will they have to wait and how long will the BCCI give Sachin a chance to achieve this record? I strongly believe that India needs a John Inverarity, because if Australia can drop Ricky Ponting from ODIs, who just scored over 200 in his last Test innings, then Tendulkar should have retired with the world cup trophy. In any case, it is heart breaking for his fans to see the great legend disappoint over and over again.
Even great Indian cricket legends like Sourav Ganguly, Kapil Dev and Sunil Gavaskar have voiced their opinions about Sachin’s retirement as it looks like he can’t do it anymore.
Sachin has to ask himself whether he is good enough to play one-day cricket day in and day out; whether it's helping him missing tournaments and playing a one-day series after eight-nine months… whether it's helping him as a one-day player or if it's helping the Indian one-day team. If Sachin can't get an answer to these questions, he has to go. (Ganguly)
From what we have seen in the last three months, he (Sachin) should have announced his retirement after the World Cup or even earlier. It’s important to know that every cricketer has his time. Having served India for 22-23 years, there surely is no greater cricketer than him but he should have announced his decision to retire from the shorter format soon after the World Cup. (Dev)
Maybe if the selection committee feels that Sachin Tendulkar doesn't have a future in the Indian one-day team, they should take him aside and speak with him," Gavaskar said on NDTV. "They should allow him to call it a day." (Gavaskar)
A recent poll conducted by the Times of India reflected the same, showing that 57% of people also want Sachin Tendulkar to retire from international cricket.
Only time will tell how this struggle will continue and whether Sachin will prove himself once again, as he has managed to on numerous occasions in the past.