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Home » News » Leave Virat Kohli alone: Sachin Tendulkar

Leave Virat Kohli alone: Sachin Tendulkar

MUMBAI: It was homecoming time for Mumbai’s son of the soil, Sachin Tendulkar, on Wednesday.

While he would have felt the pain of India missing out on the finals of the Asia Cup in Mirpur, that pain would have eased a bit by his 100th International ton, which he struck against Bangladesh, last Friday.

Tendulkar, normally reticent on arrival after a tour, was surprisingly gracious to the large media contingent waiting for a sound-byte or two, at the airport.

And he wasn’t just gracious to the media. He also was generous in praise for the in-form Virat Kohli. “He is a very good player. He is a brilliant player,” he said.

The elder statesman also turned protective towards the youngster. “Yes, Virat has done well, but don’t put pressure on him. Just let him play,” he pleaded.

The focus of attention quickly shifted to the 100th hundred and the more than a year-long wait that the champion batsman had to endure to progress from 99 to 100.

“The pressure is off now. Yes, it was a difficult phase and all of us had to wait for it for a long time. But it has made everyone realise, including me, that even after scoring 99 hundreds, it is not easy to score another one,” said Sachin.

Tendulkar also justified the reasons for India’s ouster from the Asia Cup. “We go out to win every match and sometimes it’s not possible to win every match and sometimes the opposition plays better cricket than you and that is what happened. I would not want to take the credit away from Bangladesh, who I think played very well.”

As one tailed him from the airport to his bungalow at Perry Cross Road in Bandra, one couldn’t help but notice the excitement amongst the residents of the area.

No sooner was it known that Tendulkar would be returning home on Wednesday afternoon, residents and media persons started queuing up outside 19 Perry Cross road. Many of course waited to just catch a glimpse of the superstar.

With several TV crew members standing outside his house, Tendulkar was once again forced to step outside his car and offer sound bytes. His better half, Anjali, accompanied him from the airport but waited inside the car till the time Tendulkar greeted all his fans with the same patience that he would have displayed while negotiating a Dale Steyn spell.

Quariaharoon Khan, resident of Perry Cross road said, “Hundreds of people gathered outside the house since 12’o clock. Though there were too many TV crew members, I got a chance to see Sachin. We are planning to felicitate him. We did not get the time to arrange for crackers.”

While crackers weren’t available, there was no shortage of flowers. A sea of bouquets followed once Tendulkar entered home. Politicians made a beeline to meet the maestro. Bandra BJP leader Ashish Shelar was one of them.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation is also planning to felicitate the Bandra boy. Mayor Sunil Prabhu said, “The city is really proud to have a star like him. We will be asking him to spare some time so that we could felicitate him.”

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