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Thursday, 6 November 2014

All I have done is spoken the truth: Sachin Tendulkar......




It took Sachin Tendulkar three long years to finish his autobiography. In a special interaction, Tendulkar spoke about his career & more... 

What was the toughest part about writing the book? 

The most difficult part was to reveal the relationship between Anjali and me. I have always kept that close to my heart and very few guys know about it, including our families. 

The book rakes up some controversies from the past... 

All I have done is spoken the truth. Before this, I had the important job of playing well for India. I told myself, once my cricket is done, then maybe I can speak my mind. 

When was the first time your name appeared in print? 

The first time my name appeared in a newspaper, my score was 24. One of the guys who brought up the scoresheet told me, 'If you add six more runs and make your score 30, your name will appear in the newspapers.' It was my first game ever, and I didn't know much. So I told him, 'If you think that is fine then do it', and he did it. But my sir (coach Achrekar) caught me and that was a big lesson in life. Sir told me, 'If you wish to see your name in the newspaper then you better score runs.' So that was a big lesson I learnt. Making sure facts are correct is something I learned long ago. 

Are you disappointed with how things turned out under Greg Chappell? 

I missed the first two tours after Chappell came on board. There were controversies in Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe and I wasn't there. Later we played the Challenger Trophy. I was driving back from Mohali with Zaheer Khan, Ajit Agarkar, Harbhajan and a couple of guys. That is when the players said they don't feel comfortable with Greg. I clearly told them he has just joined us and we should accommodate him and give him a chance. I said we should let him settle down. I said, 'I feel you guys are rushing and it is unfair.' I sided with Greg then. But along the way I came to know the players were right. 

Didn't you inform Dravid when Chappell asked you to take over the captaincy? 

I didn't want to do that. The matter was over because I didn't accept it. I didn't want to create that atmosphere because it was just the beginning of Greg's stint. I hadn't played a single game with Greg till then. 

Are you surprised that Greg has said you are lying? 

Anjali was with me then when Greg met me, so I need not say more. 

What about Ian Chappell's comment that 'Sachin should look at himself in the mirror'? 

I don't think much about him. I showed him the size of the mirror in the VB Series in 2007. He has got nothing to do with Indian cricket. Sometimes people are given too much importance. 

Did he say sorry? 

I don't want his sorry. But in Durban, in 2010, when I was working out in the gym, we just bumped into each other and he said, 'This is the secret of your success.' I said, 'You have conveniently changed sides.' Nitin Patel was standing next to me when I told him that. 

Tell us about the Mike Denness controversy... 

I remember after the game (Nov 2001, vs South Africa), somebody told me match officials had asked 7-8 guys to come and my name was there. It was for ball tampering so I was shocked. I asked the umpires if they had found any change in the ball and they said no. They had also not complained to the referee. I went to the match referee and told him that I was just cleaning the seam. And he said I should have told the umpires. One lesson I learnt was that after that, whenever I cleaned the seam, I would tell the umpires. The umpires would smile at me but I thought I better do it. 

Do you remember every delivery, every dismissal? 

I maintained a diary for the first two years of my cricketing life but I have lost it somewhere. When I started playing for India, for almost 10 years or so I would go back and watch video cassettes. I would take back recordings of all my hundreds and all the dismissals. I would go back home and study it with my brother. I stopped doing this after 10 years or so. 

What kind of a role has the media played in your life? 

I think the media support I have received not just after I started playing for India but right from the school days -has been great. Overall, the media has been fair to me. It is impossible to agree with everything. 

Were you harsh on yourself as captain? 

I wanted to give my best. There were matches we should have won. It really hurt me and it really disturbed me that the games which were in our pocket were taken away from us. So those are huge disappointments. But in any sportsman's career it is always a mixed deal. Sometimes you don't have any explanation for things that work and things that don't. 

Why did you quit the captaincy? 

Things didn't go according to plan when I was captain. It had started affecting me as a person. Even when I was back with my family, I couldn't switch off. I would constantly be thinking about it. It started disturbing me and affecting me personally . I then realized if I am not the captain, it does not mean cricket is taken away from me. Someone else is going to come and captain the side. If I still score runs and win matches, I will be happy .