On March 18, 2012, batting legend Sachin Tendulkar played his final One-day International – in the Asia Cup in Dhaka – and coincidentally, it came against Pakistan; he had also made his Test debut against the neighbours.
Chasing a stiff total of 330, India got off to the worst possible start. Opener Gautam Gambhir was out in the second delivery he faced. Virat Kohli walked into the crease but it was Tendulkar who took charge. He was tearing into the Pakistan bowlers and made a quick-fire half-century, setting the tone for a monumental chase.
He was dismissed soon after by spinner Saeed Ajmal, culpable of waiting for the turn from a straighter delivery. Kohli, well-set by then and Rohit Sharma joined hands at the crease and India chased down the target with 13 balls to spare. For Kohli, this was a breakthrough innings, scoring a majestic 183. Former captains Sourav Ganguly and MS Dhoni have also managed achieve the feat.
With the ODI team going through a transitional phase, Tendulkar opted out and subsequently announced his decision to retire from all forms of cricket a year later. This game came just two days after he had scored his much-awaited hundredth international century, a feat achieved by no other cricketer. Many would point out that the baton had passed on to Kohli against Pakistan. Some would even say that Tendulkar’s century record is now in threat with the current Indian captain hot on his heels with that pursuit.
Respond to this article with a post
Share your perspective on this article with a post on ScrollStack, and send it to your followers.