NEW DELHI: This weekend, TIMES NOW – India’s No. 1 general English news channel presents its viewers with a special episode of ‘Frankly Speaking’. In a candid interview with TIMES NOW‘s Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami, India’s God of cricket, Sachin Tendulkar, discusses his retirement, memorable moments of his career and shares exclusive insights into his personal life.
In the interview Sachin reacts for the first time to statements made by Sunil Gavaskar that state how he has been bowled twice consecutively and how that is a bad sign for the batsman. Sachin responded to the comment saying, “Sunil Gavaskar has also said positive things about me. When there have been a lot of positive feedback as well, why keep harping only on the negative comments? Ultimately, if I am out, I am out. I can‘t get stuck on one article about me and try to create something that the person is hoping to create out of it. I need to stay focused on the game and constantly keep finding ways to improve myself. There is no stage in which one ceases to learn about cricket. One remains a student of this game for ever.
On being asked about his plans for retirement, Sachin shared, “I am 39 and I don‘t think I have plenty of cricket left in me. But it depends on my frame of mind and my physical ability to deliver. At this stage, I don‘t think I will be playing the next World Cup.”
Commenting on the match versus Pakistan in 2004 where he hit 194 not out when the match was declared, Sachin shared, “I was asked a question in a press conference just after the match if I was surprised by the declaration. I said yes. Then I was asked if I was disappointed. I said, "Yes, I‘d be lying if I said I wasn‘t disappointed." But that is all that I had said. After the declaration, I got to the dressing room, quietly put my bat aside and sat down. I had my pads on. After a couple of minutes, I washed my face, went up to John Wright, our coach then and said, "I will take some time to get back on the field because my back is a little sore. I will go after a while." That is all that happened.”
Discussing the test match versus Pakistan in 1999 where India lost by 12 runs, Sachin said, “It was disappointing. Yes I cried. I felt bad because we were so close to winning the match but couldn‘t cross the final hurdle. I have to admit that I was not able to receive the Man of the Match award then because I was in tears.”
Responding to accusations about playing the game only to continue commercial endorsements associated with him, Sachin said, “My manager tells me that there were a couple of articles about this issue. As a matter of fact, there was an article in The Economic Times… I‘d call this irresponsible journalism by a journalist who has vested interests.”