I have a habit of opening three tabs when I first open my PC in office in the morning. Those tabs read- Gmail, Facebook and Yahoo News. So today, when I started flicking through the headlines, I came glanced through a “Tendulkar” written somewhere. Without bothering to make a head or tail of the new, I opened it to pursue with full interest. After all, with the recent downward spiral that Team India has decided to traverse, and with retirement of Sachin, any news with the word “Tendulkar” in it grabs my attention.
So, the news article was all about how Sachin’s 12 year old kid is doing good for himself in cricket and has been selected to represent his city in U-14 Team. As far as I am concerned this is good news. Who wouldn’t want to keep hearing about a Tendulkar playing cricket? But even though I am excited, I am also cautious. The junior Tendulkar is probably too young to realise this, but the shoes that he might be looking at, are of God’s himself.
Sachin has been religion as far as cricket fans are concerned. The arrival of his son on the cricket field is something to rejoice. But it will be unfair to expect from him same things that Sachin set an example for. Arjun might be a fantastic player (and I hope he is), very close to the talent that Sachin has or maybe even a touch better (I don’t know if that is humanly possible). But that does not assure that he will go down in history as one of the greatest players ever.
But if does not explode on the opportunities, the critics and fans will not waste a moment to write him off. In this regard, I would say a youngster is given more opportunities (with the fans and media) than someone with a famous cricketer as his father. It is not the same amount of talent or class that is the problem. The huge amount of expectation is. It is natural to have expectations for great things from the son of a legendary dad. But the disappointment on falling short of them is heartbreaking.
Anyone remember how Rohan Gavaskar, son of the legendary Sunil Gavaskar burst out on the International front? But the star frizzled out in only 11 ODIs and now, at the age of 36 has retired. He played his last ODI in 2009 and announced retirement in 2012.
I hope and sincerely pray that Arjun Tendulkar takes his time to mature. More than that, his entry on the international level of cricket is not rushed. And when he does come out to play in India colours, he is given enough time and opportunity to prove his mettle to fans, media and cricketing community in general.
- Let Arjun enjoy the game, urges Sachin Tendulkar (cricketnext.in.com)
- Sachin’s son Arjun Tendulkar in under-14 Mumbai squad (cricketnext.in.com)