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When Tendulkar made merry in April

Last updated on: April 24, 2013 12:10 IST

When Tendulkar made merry in April

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Manu Shankar

His smile is contagious. His bat is explosive. It's a wonderful story of a 16-year-old's journey from realizing boyhood dreams to achieving iconic status.

No prizes for guessing. We are talking about Sachin Tendulkar. 

- Celebrating Sachin @40

Tendulkar's journey from making his debut against Pakistan in 1989 to the present is nothing short of a roller coaster ride.

The Master Blaster has given the nation plenty of reasons to smile and celebrate – none bigger than the World Cup triumph in 2011.

Today, as he turns 40, we look at his memorable knocks in the 'Birthday month'.

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Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Matthew Lewis/Getty Images

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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112 vs Sri Lanka, Sharjah 1995 (April 9)

Tendulkar was the difference in the must-win tie of the Asia Cup in Sharjah.

Playing for a spot in the final, which included Pakistan as the other team, the then 21-year-old took the Sri Lankan attack to the cleaners.

Celebrating Sachin @40

Opting to bat first, all Sri Lanka could manage was 202-9, courtesy some good bowling from Venkatesh Prasad, who took 3-37 from his 10 overs.

But as Tendulkar came out in the middle, the wicket suddenly looked like a batsmen's paradise. His first boundary was a copy-book straight drive off Janak Gamage that announced  his intentions.

Thereafter, there were an array of shots that left skipper Arjuna Ranatunga running out of ideas.


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Anwar Mirza

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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100 vs Pakistan, Singapore 1996 (April 5)

Another classic encounter between Sachin Tendulkar versus Pakistan.A one-man show really, as India were asked to bat first in the rain-curtailed Singer Cup match. 


Batting first,  none of the Indian batsmen, save Tendulkar, could get going. The next best knock was 41 from Sanjay Manjrekar, as India posted 226 from 47.1 overs.

Openers Amir Sohail and Saeed Anwar gave Pakistan a fabulous start, ensuring that the bitter-rivals were well and truly above the asking rate.In the end, Pakistan beat India by eight wickets, with 30 balls remaining.

Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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118 vs Pakistan, Sharjah 1996 (April 15)

By this time Sachin Tendulkar had taken a special liking to the arch-rivals. 

Almost 10 days after scoring a century against the same opposition in Singapore, he smashed yet another ton to guide India to victory.

Celebrating Sachin @40

Riding on twin centuries from Tendulkar and Navjot Singh Sidhu, India posted a massive 305, their first 300-plus score in ODIs.

With Pakistan requiring 28 runs for victory and India needing one wicket, Tendulkar had Saqlian Mushtaq walking back to the pavilion giving India a famous win over their rivals.


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Reuters

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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100 vs Australia, Kanpur 1998 (April 7)

If we have to sum up this knock from the champion batsmen, all we need to do is to look at the sixes column. Seven sixes! That sums the mood Tendulkar was in that day when taking on the powerful Aussies.

Australia,  electing to bat first, put up 222 from their stipulated 50 overs, Ricky Ponting top-scoring with 84 for the visitors.

Celebrating Sachin @40

The reply was a thunderous one as Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar laid a solid platform of 175-runs for the first wicket to help India ease into the run chase.

Tendulkar hit the bowlers to all corners with utter disdain to help India win the match by six wickets and 33 balls to spare.


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Reuters

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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143 vs Australia, Sharjah 1998 (April 22)

This is, perhaps, one his greatest One-day knocks. Experts often remember the knock for two storms – first the sandstorm, then the Sachin Tendulkar storm, which left the Aussies running for cover.

Playing the triangular series of the Coca Cola Cup, Tendulkar decimated the Aussie bowling line-up that boasted of the likes of Michael Kasprowicz, Damien Fleming, Shane Warne and Tom Moody.

Celebrating Sachin @40

Chasing a competitive score of 284, India were in trouble at one stage, reeling at 138-4. Requiring 254 to beat New Zealand on net run-rate and make it to the final, the champion batsman blasted his way to a magnificent century.

By the time Tendulkar was dismissed, India had booked a place in the final. India had won the battle. Australia, though, won fight!


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Stu Forster/Allsport

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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134 vs Australia, Sharjah 1998 (April 24)

The Master Blaster saved his best for last. Two days later after the magnificent 143, Sachin Tendulkar celebrated his 25th birthday in grand style, smashing yet another match-winning hundred.

The commentators ran out of adjectives to describe the innings and shots that he was stroking. Shane Warne was never the same bowler after this match. So much so that Warne confessed that he was having nightmares of having Sachin chip down the track and smashing him for a maximum.

Celebrating Sachin @40

Requiring 273 for victory, Tendulkar toyed with the bowling to hand India a famous win over the mighty Aussies.

Steve Waugh, then captain of Australia, said he lost the tournament to a one-man army called Sachin Tendulkar!


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Reuters

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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117 vs West Indies, Port of Spain 2002 (April 20)

It's a knock that had many firsts. It was Tendulkar's first century in the West Indies. He equalled Don Bradman's record of 29 Test tons.

The second Test, played at Port of Spain, saw India batting first. Riding on Tendulkar's century, they posted a formidable 339 in their first innings.

Celebrating Sachin @40

The West Indies were shot out for 245, giving India a healthy 94 runs lead in their first innings. 

In the second innings, Tendulkar didn't trouble the scorers, but Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman made vital contributions to ensure India set the hosts an uphill task of chasing 312 runs for victory.

The West Indies could only manage 275, giving India victory by 37 runs.


Image: Sachin Tendulkar
Photographs: Reuters

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When Tendulkar made merry in April

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123 vs Pakistan, Ahmedabad 2005 (April 17)

It's one for a losing cause. The touring Pakistan team, by Inzamam-ul-Haq, who was at his best, was in great batting form.

Batting first, India rode on a magnificent century from Sachin Tendulkar. Such was value of the innings that the next highest score by Indian batsmen was MS Dhoni,  who scored a 64-ball 47. 

Celebrating Sachin @40

It was Sachin's 72nd career century.

Pakistan got off to a flying start; all their top 5 batsmen got starts, Inzy guiding the visitors home off the last ball of the innings. 


Image: Sachin Tendulkar


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