(Published on Nov 14, 2009)
If you are a sucker for cricket nostalgia of the Sachin Tendulkar kind, the Taj Lands End was the place to be yesterday.
The batting maestro remembered every detail about his 20-year-old international career, an occasion he celebrates tomorrow.
Tendulkar's first TV interview
Tendulkar’s memory did not betray him when it came to recalling the time when he was a probable for the 1988-89 tour of the West Indies. He had shown his spark on the Ranji Trophy scene and there were pundits who felt he had an outside chance in India chief selector Raj Singh Dungarpur’s scheme of things.
“Rajbhai told me, ‘you won't be going to the West Indies. We feel it’s too early. There will be the Irani Trophy. Enjoy your cricket, do your best and good things will happen. It’s important that you appear for your SSC examinations.’ That was very good advice,” he said.
It was during this period that MiD DAY produced a video of Tendulkar being interviewed by actor and sports buff Tom Alter at the P J Hindu Gymkhana in Mumbai.
Three years earlier, MiD DAY was the first newspaper to interview Tendulkar -- conducted at an Irani restaurant near Shivaji Park by sports journalist Sunil Warrier. Tendulkar was just 13.
Back to Alter. When the actor asked Tendulkar whether he was tired of people asking him questions and journalists pestering him for interviews, Tendulkar said, “This is just the start.” Some visionary! When it came to the West Indies tour, he was asked whether he felt it was the right time to go and young Tendulkar”s confidence disallowed him from saying no to the interviewer. Not only that, he also said he won’t have any trouble facing West Indian quicks like Malcolm Marshall and Curtly Ambrose.
Alter asked him whether he had a problem with Kapil Dev’s outswing and inswing when the great bowled to him in the nets. “No, I didn't have a problem,” he said.
It happened here
Parmananddas Jivandas Hindu Gymkhana (known as Hindu Gymkhana), where Sachin gave his first TV interview, is a social and sporting club located along Marine Drive. It was originally started as Hindu Cricket Club in 1878. The gymkhana itself was inaugurated by then Governor of Bombay, Lord Harris on 5 May 1894. Until 1942, membership of the gymkhana was restricted to Hindus. The Gymkhana has been identified as a Heritage Grade IIA structure. Former cricketer Eknath Solkar's father was a groundsman here.
Sachin’s score in the inter-school Harris Shield match in 1988