First and foremost, this is not to confront anyone, don't take it as if i am arguing or grumbling, instead i am just putting up my thoughts..
- A great batsman.. agreed, but a good sportsman NO
- A great human.. agreed, but is he known for being a great human NO
- Very modest.. agreed, but is he known for his modesty NO
- Great technique.. agreed, but was that of any use NO
- Fantastic player.. agreed, but a team player NO, NEVER
Let me take the help of my favorite analogy. Consider Sachin to be a cook. A world renowned cook who has reached the pinnacle of aesthetic, orthodox cooking, one who knows every damn dish and still keeps on adding some new variety, some new flavor and some new aroma to the dishes. But this chef has unknowingly cultivated a bad habit. As soon as the dish is ready to be served, ready to fill someone's belly, he throws it away. As simple as that, he just throws it away.
Everybody saw him cooking many a times; everybody enjoyed the lovely aroma of the splendid food that was being cooked. BUT, what good that food is, if it can not satiate the hunger. Smell, however sweet it may be, can never fill the appetite. You have to eat food, but our master chef loves throwing it away.
I completely agree that there are ten other players who are equally responsible for the debacle, but is it like necessary for HIM to throw away things for the junior cooks to reassemble and serve. They sometimes do it too, but why only Dhoni or Yuvraj think of sticking around till the end and not our GOD. Ponting, who has been considered next best, tries till his last breath to take his team to the podium; he might have a short hand at batting when compared to the GOD, but this lord of Cricket has done more for his team than for himself. He might have thought of chasing Sachin in the number of centuries scored but did Sachin ever try to actually stick till the end and score the winning runs? NO.
I hated Brian Lara for the very same reason, he always played for himself. He was rarely a match-winner. His square drives, cover drives, those hooks and whatever, did they serve any purpose except his own? No. Chanderpaul or Sarwan must have sailed the drowning Windies boat more than what Lara did. Even though both of them are not even near to what Lara has to offer in statistics.
I sincerely feel if Sachin had been a part of some individual sport like Tennis or Chess, he would surely be a great for me too. But he has hurted my feelings not once, not twice, but a million times. He was made the captain, I was more than happy; but he fumbled, I was perfectly okay with that too, being a human he has every damn right to fumble, he was never a GOD for me, but i certainly admired him for the various facets of his personality; particularly his humbleness, his calmness, the love for his family and above all, the way he handled burden of fame on his tiny shoulders.
BUT, he should understand the difference between taking your team to the victory and the actual victory. You kill a thousand soldiers of the rival army and being the king, foolishly jump into the well; you are not doing any good to your nation. You will be admired for being a fierce fighter but will you be a patriot. NO. I don't give a damn about his 170 odd runs or that mammoth 17000, what i know is INDIA LOST..and that is where the story ends for me.
Thismight sound foolish or immature, but that is how cricket rules our brains. Our emotions are attached to it; till the last ball, our hopes, however shattered they are, still stand tall against the hot and scorching winds of the rivals. That's cricket for us, and Sachin in those senses is neither God nor a loyal responsible sportsman. My heart weeps writing this, but this is the truth at least in my soaring eyes.