With rich tributes pouring in from all quarters for Sachin Tendulkar on his 40th birthday on Wednesday, his childhood coach, Ramakant Achrekar, too conveyed his wishes and said the Indian batsman would live happily as long as he plays.
Speaking on behalf of the 80-year-old Dronacharya award winning coach, who is not keeping well after his hip bone fracture, daughter Kalpana told PTI: "My blessings are always there with him."
"May he's blessed with more and more runs. I want to see him play long and really long. He will live happily as long as he plays. Cricket is his passion," Achrekar said through Kalpana.
Tendulkar had paid a visit to Achrekar whom he considers his guru ahead of the Australia series, which India won 4-0. "He along with (wife) Anjali had come to meet Baba. They spent some time quietly chatting," she said.
Achrekar keenly follows every game that Tendulkar plays. "He sits right in front of the TV set and does not move when Tendulkar bats. He is eagerly waiting for the match on his birthday," she added.
Achrekar took Tendulkar from IES School, Bandra to Shardashram Vidyamandir (English) where he was the coach as he learnt the nuances of the game.