Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar is widely considered as the greatest batsman of all time, or a least the equal of the great Sir Don Bradman. To say that ‘the Little Master (he’s 5′ 5”) is very popular is a massive understatement. His fan following is global and beyond…it’s out of this world, like his batting. He remains the most worshipped cricketer on the planet by some distance. In India they say,”Cricket is my religion and Sachin is my god’.
Sachin holds all the world records. He is the leading run scorer in both Tests and One Day Internationals and the only player to pass 30,000 runs in all forms of International cricket. He has the most Test centuries (51) and ODI’s (49) in the most Test matches (200) and ODI’s (463).
In November 2013 he retired from all cricket after scoring 74 in his final innings against the West Indies at his home ground in Mumbai. Over the years I have been privillaged to see Sachin play, including in Mumbai. or Bombay as it was called then.I have collected his graph many times. In November last year he was at a book-signing (‘Playing It My Way’) at Waterstones in the Jubilee Place Mall at London’s Canary Wharf. Unprecedented scenes brought the place to a standstill as record crowds stormed the store for Sachin-mania. An scheduled hour session turned into two and a half as he signed books for the never-ending queue, moi included. Because of the obvious time constraints he was only able to autograph the book, so I couldn’t get this sketch signed. Anticipating this, I had it all packed up and gave it to one of his team. it came back from Sachin’s Mumbai address this week. A Little Master-stroke!
I’m not sure if it’s hand-signed or a stamp, because the sig has a ‘fade’ in the middle of it. Given the amount of requests he receives it stands to reason he can’t sign them all. However the ink has bleed through the paper and on the reverse side there are pressure points consistent with a writing instrument being used. the ‘fade’ maybe the result of paper being placed on top of the graph,absorbing the ink, before it completely dried.
Either way, I was grateful the drawing was acknowledged.