As I watch the great man thanking all his mentors, supporters, family, I realise that every soul in the stadium has become emotional and I too shed some tears. Such is the love the country has for the man batting with number 10. 24 years is a very long time, a long time to be playing the game, a long time to be supporting one man. In these years, we all had moments where we would fall in love with cricket all over again because of the way Sachin played. During the 24 years, we loved him, prayed for him, sometimes even got upset about his bad form, but the support was always there. So what makes this man worthy of so much affection and honor? Is it the way he performs with that bat? Is it the way he is always calm even under pressure? What makes Sachin Sachin is his humble attitude, the way he is always down to the earth. This was witnessed by millions when he took that 200 yard walk, to visit the place which made him what he is and is like a home to him. We saw him bow down to the pitch to pay his respects which was followed by an overflow of emotions at his end. Sachin will always be remembered as the man who gave cricket his life, the man who made us adore the game. The constant chant of ‘Sachin… Sachin….’ reverberating in the entire stadium, the presence of Sudhir holding the huge flag and all painted in the tri colour with Tendulkar written across his belly, the tremendous uproars and cries of happiness whenever the camera angled at Sachin, all the prayers while Sachin reached his nervous nineties, all this was a part and parcel of a typical Indian cricket match. But things would change now, the man we cherish has retired. No one can truly fathom or accept the harsh reality that the Master Blaster would not be there creating magic with his bat. The nation loves him, respects him and his absence will hurt.
SRT, the number 10 would be in our hearts forever and you will never be forgotten. This is my little way of respecting the man with whom my childhood too has retired. I love you and I am going to miss you.