BCCI unofficially retires jersey number 10 in honour of Sachin Tendulkar
What's the story?
After an outrage from the fans when they saw fast bowler Shardul Thakur donning the number 10 Indian jersey, the BCCI has decided to “unofficially” retire the number 10 jersey for international matches, which means the kit number will only be associated with the legendary Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar, who wore it for years.
"It unnecessarily creates controversy and players get criticised. So it’s better to retire the number unofficially. Players, though, can wear it when they play for India A or for say a non-international list A match but not during an international," a BCCI official told Indian Express.
It is also understood that BCCI reached out to top players from the Indian team for their views on this and they all agreed on the number 10 to be retired.
In case you didn't know...
After Sachin retired from limited overs cricket in March 2012, the jersey number 10 was not taken by any of the Indian cricketers till Mumbai pacer Shardul Thakur opted for it earlier this year when the Indian side toured Sri Lanka for a five-match ODI series.
When he was spotted wearing the jersey on his debut, the fans on social media targetted the pacer for taking the number 10. Adding to the fans' reaction, some Indian cricketers also pulled Shardul's leg with this.
After all the trolls and outrage on social media, Shardul gave up the number and opted for 54 when he joined the Indian ODI side for the New Zealand series last month.
Shardul claimed that numerology is the only reason why he chose number 10. He said the digits of his date of birth (16.10.1991) add up to 28 and 2+8 equals 10.
Parallels from history
This is not the first time in Sports a board is retiring a player's jersey as a token of honour. In Football, Inter Milan and AC Milan have retired number 4 and 3 respectively as a tribute to their legends Javier Zanetti and Paolo Maldini.
Even Sachin's IPL side Mumbai Indians retired his jersey number after he called it a day from all forms of cricket in 2013.
There are few players who play out of their skin for their team for years and earned the legendary status. Retiring their jersey numbers in the honour of the respective players along with their retirement is something the board can give back to the players as a token of appreciation.
It is good to see the BCCI retiring the jersey number 10 in honour of Sachin Tendulkar and they should do the same when MS Dhoni calls it a day from Cricket unless he wants someone to wear the number 7 jersey.