Sachin Tendulkar came out of retirement, so to speak, and faced one over during the innings break of the Bushfire Bash match between Ponting XI and Gilchrist XI at the Junction Oval, Melbourne on Sunday.
Tendulkar faced Australia all-rounder Ellyse Perry (including two balls from Annabel Sutherland). He later said that he was thankful that he could still see the ball, five-and-a-half years after batting last.
Perry bowled the first four balls and Tendulkar got off the mark with a boundary through the fine-leg region. Perry had her Australian teammates as the fielders.
That was not the only highlight of the day in Melbourne as many superstars of yesteryears were in action during the match. Brian Lara, Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist and Brett Lee were seen in action as Ponting XI batted first and posted 104/5 in 10 overs.
Lara once again showed his stylish batting and scored 30 runs off just 11 balls, hitting three fours and two sixes. Lara was, without a doubt, the star of the day.
Ponting also scored 26 runs with four fours in the innings.
Matthew Hayden hit the first six of the match but he was dismissed after scoring 16 runs by Yuvraj Singh. Andrew Symonds and Courtney Walsh were the other two wicket-takers for Gilchrist XI.
Here’s a near 3-minute clip of Lara’s outing on Sunday, sure to make every 90s kid nostalgic:
In the chase, Gilchrist blasted Lee for a six over square-leg to begin with before being dismissed. But Shane Watson and Symonds were at their best as they dealt in boundaries. Even the great Wasim Akram could not stop the duo as Watson scored 30 runs off just nine balls.
Ultimately, after some last ball drama it seemed Ponting XI were declared the winners by a run but the result did not really matter. It was a day of giving and nostalgia for cricket lovers.
All match profits and funds raised across the weekend’s Big Appeal will go to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund.
(Clarification: The original report said Gilchrist XI won the match, it has now been corrected)