The Master's Jewels: Top 10 Test innings by Sachin Tendulkar
Many ardent fans hoped that this day would never come. They kept praying, hoping that their hero would continue to soldier on in the longer format for at least another couple of years.
Age, slowing reflexes and a fairly silent bat eventually made him decide to call time on his Test career, bringing down the curtains on a journey that spanned twenty four years and six World Cup tournaments – winning the last one in 2011.
He had already bid farewell to coloured clothing and the white ball a year ago, and walked into the sunset of Twenty20 cricket a few days previously after the Mumbai Indians added a second Champions League title to the 2013 IPL crown.
Nearly 200 Test matches and 50,000 career runs later, Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar is ready to leave the game, letting the burden of responsibility he held for so long go on to much younger shoulders.
As he prepares to put his body through the grind of the longest format for one last time, here is a look at ten of his best Test innings:
10. 114 vs Australia at Perth, 1992
Into the fifth Test match of his fledgling international career, Sachin thoroughly dominated the fearsome Aussie pace battery of Merv Hughes, Craig McDermott, Paul Reiffel and Mike Whitney on the bouncy WACA track.
For a skinny 18-year old brought up on slow pitches back home in India, this was a captivating innings. Consisting mostly of swaure cuts, the batsman’s knock also featured a few of his soon-to-be signature cover drives as he dealt with the bowling in the manner of an accomplished veteran.
His display was so authoritative that it prompted the burly Hughes to remark to his captain Allan Border: “This little prick’s going to get more runs than you, AB” – a statement that would come true years later.
Unfortunately for his heroics, India ended up losing the game thanks to magnificent performances from Tom Moody, Dean Jones and David Boon, with Whitney destroying the opposition line up with a seven wicket haul. Nevertheless, Sachin’s innings made the world sit up and take notice of the prodigy who would go on to become one of the greatest batsmen in the history of the game.