Sachin Tendulkar’s son, Arjun, chose a special place at the Wankhede Stadium to witness his legendary father’s 200th and last Test yesterday.
He ditched his President’s Box ticket where his family was seated and chose to be a ball boy with his Mumbai U-14 teammates on the second day. A birdie told MiD DAY that Arjun seemed to have enjoyed his stint on the ropes. “He was joking with his teammates. He was having fun. But at the same time, he was also closely observing the players,” he said.
Tendulkar, who was 38 not out overnight, was eventually dismissed for 74 yesterday. As the boisterous crowd went silent once Tendulkar departed, his son Arjun too was shell-shocked.
“He just couldn’t believe that his father was dismissed. He was very upset when Sachin got out. For quite sometime, he did not talk to anyone. He got emotional too. However, Arjun was delighted to see the standing ovation his father got,” said the source. It may be recalled that even Tendulkar was a ball boy during the 1987 World Cup at the Wankhede.
Rahul, Yuvi in stands
Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi took time off from his hectic schedule to witness Tendulkar’s innings yesterday and chose to give the President’s Box a miss. He preferred sitting amongst the fans. After spending some time with Maharashtra chief minister Prithviraj Chavan he made a dash for the Grand Stand that’s situated just above the President’s Box.
Tendulkar’s former teammate Yuvraj Singh too preferred soaking in the atmosphere from the stands and was seen seated in the Garware Pavilion along with some friends. Later on, he enjoyed a small stint in the commentary box.
The MCA is planning to make replicas of the specially-minted coin which had a Tendulkar portrait on one side and the Indian Board’s logo on the other along with tickets of this landmark Test at the Wankhede. “There were suggestions to make replicas of the coin and ticket and we have decided to make them and give it to our 329 clubs as souvenirs,” MCA’s joint secretary Nitin Dalal told MiD DAY.
Mother’s day out
Former India batsman Ravi Shastri’s mother Lakshmi was at the Wankhede to witness Tendulkar’s last couple of days in India colours. She was seated in the commentators’ arena where Shastri, a full-time commentator now, was on duty.