Kolkata: Sachin Tendulkar took the centrestage at the Eden Gardens as the Mumbai Indians 'icon' was seen giving a pep talk to his team before getting into a long chat with RCB skipper Virat Kohli ahead of the IPL-8 opener here tomorrow.
The legendary Indian, who played his penultimate and career's 199th Test here two years ago, landed this morning and joined the boys straightway at Eden Gardens on the eve of their IPL opener against Kolkata Knight Riders.
Mumbai Indians icon Sachin Tendulkar (centre) giving batting tips to team captain Rohit Sharma (right) as coach Ricky Ponting looks on during their training session at Eden Garden in Kolkata on Tuesday. Pic/PTI
Clad in team jersey and shorts, Tendulkar remained at the ground for the entire two-hour long practice and gave attention to all the 26 Mumbai Indians players. But the photographer's delight came later in the day when Royal Challengers Bangalore too checked in as Kohli got engaged in a long conversation with the iconic Indian.
RCB, who start their campaign against Knight Riders on April 11 here, practised alongside the star-studded Mumbai Indians with coach Ricky Ponting. Terming Tendulkar as an integral part of their side, Mumbai Indians skipper Rohit Sharma said: "He's been part of Mumbai Indians for the last seven years now."
(From left to right): Former cricketer J Srinath with Harbhajan Singh of Mumbai Indians and RCB captain Virat Kohli during a training session at Eden Garden in Kolkata on Tuesday. Pic/PTI
Sharma said Tendulkar's visit was not a surprise at all. "He's been an integral part of team ever since he started playing for MI and he continues to be. Whenever we need him, he's always there for us.
"It was just a strategy for tomorrow's game. He was just sharing his thoughts. Nothing much," Sharma signed off.