'No matter where I am, this beautiful game is always in the back of my mind.'
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella loves cricket like most Indians. But ask him to choose between Sachin Tendulkar and Virat Kohli, he is stumped.
During a fireside chat, Microsoft India president Anant Maheshwari asked Nadella to choose between Kohli and Tendulkar.
"This is like picking religions. I would say Sachin yesterday, Virat today," quipped Nadella.
The India-born executive's love for the gentleman's game is pretty well known. In his book Hit Refresh, he has outlined how the game had influenced his professional and personal life.
"No matter where I am, this beautiful game is always in the back of my mind. The joy, the memories, the drama, the complexities, and the ups and downs - the infinite possibilities," Nadella has written in his book.
He had highlighted how cricket had inculcated various attributes in him, right from teamwork to competing with passion.
During his chat with Maheshwari, Nadella spoke of his meeting with Anil Kumble, who has a startup, Spektacom Technologies.
With sensors fitted into bats, data in terms of quality, swing and power are collected real-time. These data points can then be analysed by players, coaches etc to work on enhancing performance.
"...he was kind enough to let me take a ball and hit it for a six, which is the only time I got to do it in life, live my dream," Nadella said.
Asked about his favourite subject in school, Nadella surprised many in the audience when he said, "history", while also comparing coding to poetry.
"I always think of coding is like poetry, it's just compact expression. So I think coding can inspire you, in both liberal arts as well as in the sciences, to really make a difference," he said.
Nadella, 52, said he would want to read all the books he has bought.
"...if I could read all the books I bought. I'd be so much better off. That's why I am so excited about natural language progress because that's what I need," he said.