Legendary batter Sachin Tendulkar went down memory lane to his international retirement when Virat Kohli came up with a special gesture for him. Sachin bowed out at his home ground, the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, after a Test match against the West Indies.
In the last innings he played, the Master Blaster entertained one and all with a 74-run knock, before Narsingh Deonarine accounted for his wicket. Darren Sammy took a sharp catch in the slip cordon and the audience in Mumbai stood up applauding for the genius.
Tendulkar recalled that he was full of emotions after playing his final knock, after which Kohli went up to him. The now 48-year-old veteran said that Kohli had given him a ‘sacred thread’ his Late father Prem Kohli gave him earlier.
Even as Sachin Tendulkar was touched by the gesture, he returned it to Virat Kohli later, explaining to him the importance of the prized possession.
I returned that to Virat Kohli: Sachin Tendulkar
“I was sitting in one corner alone with a towel on my head and wiping tears. And at that time, Virat had come to me and Virat gave me the sacred thread that his father had given him…
“And I kept that for a while and then returned that to him. I said, ‘This is priceless and this has to stay with you. And you should have it till your last breath’,” Sachin told.
— Sachin Tendulkar Fan Club (@OmgSachin) February 17, 2022
Kohli was a newbie in Test cricket back then, having played only 20 Tests and scoring, 1235 runs at an average of 41.16 with four centuries. In the very next year, Kohli became India’s full-time Test captain after MS Dhoni hanged his boots from the purest format.
Eight years later, Kohli is one of the bedrocks of India’s Test batting lineup. In 99 Tests, the Delhi-born has notched 7962 runs at an average of 50.39 with 27 centuries. Recently, Kohli stepped down as the skipper of the Indian Test team after the 1-2 series defeat in South Africa.
Last year, Kohli also relinquished the T20 captaincy after India’s campaign in the T20 World Cup in Oman and the UAE. Thereafter, he was removed as the ODI skipper as well.
As far as Tendulkar is concerned, even nine years after his retirement, a number of his records remain unbroken. He is still the only batter in the planet to have 100 centuries at the international level.