Indian batting great Sachin Tendulkar recollects the memory of his duel with Glenn McGrath when both great were giving their insights to budding bowlers at the MRF pace academy in Chennai.
Sachin Tendulkar recounts his duel with McGrath of 1999 when India was playing Australia at Adelaide. Giving bowlers inputs about batsmen strategy the batting legend said, “Glenn is someone who I felt was extremely focused, aggressive, disciplined and stuck to his plans. I remember when we played in Adelaide in 1999.
“I walked in to bat on the second day after tea and I played six maiden overs of Glenn. He kept bowling on the off stump and I kept leaving them, basically wanting to make him come back to me. He did not come and I too didn’t go after him. We both stuck to our plans.
“I think a good bowler makes the batsman play,” said the maestro while McGrath was hearing him.
The Australian bowling great McGrath encouraged budding bowlers to take tips from The Master while Sachin urged young bowlers to “Learn from McGrath”. “It’s a special privilege for you budding bowlers to be trained under the mentorship of McGrath, one of the ace pace blowers the game has seen,” Sachin was quoted as saying in a release.
He also told them the mantra of success in international cricket. He said hard work, passion and dedication is the only way to succeed in this word of cut-throat competition. “I told them to understand what international cricket is all about. As times goes by, the game really gets tougher and more competitive,” he was quoted as saying by media.
Sachin gives them his personal experience with cricket, he continued ” if you have to play for India, it is not easy. You stay there for a long time. The passion and desire to play for India was so much within me.
“I was madly in love with cricket and I am still madly in love with the game. I was able to work for hours and hours and nothing could tire me out. My coach literally had to grab me out of the nets.
“On a number of occasions, it was really dark and we could barely see each other’s face in the darkness. You cannot figure out where the ball is pitched. But I will be batting at the nets.
Sachin also acknowledged the need of support from his surroundings is must to play the game confidently.
“These kinds of things had to be backed by right guidance and right support. I had terrific support from my family, my friends and my coaches and that became a formidable force”, he said.
Sachin also admitted that at a young age all these things are impossible to understand. But, he told them that if they maintain discipline and have a vision, then the dream can become a reality.
“Above all, I think if you are disciplined and visionary, you can chase your dreams. For me, because everything happened at a young age perhaps I was not old enough to understand the importance of all those things,” the maestro said.
At the same time, McGrath said Virat Kohli’s five bowlers ploy is creating pressure on bowlers as India does not have quality Allrounder. He said, his ploy will only be successful if India get a quality batting all-rounder in the team. “My theory on playing five bowlers is that the fifth bowler should be an all-rounder. To go with five bowlers to me is heavily weighed on the bowlers and the batsmen really need to score runs. Always have three fast bowlers and a spinner and a quality batting all rounder in the playing XI,” McGrath said.
“It is fine as he has got the ability to back it up and play that way. I think India have quality players and there is no doubt about that. That is the way Virat plays and he wants the team to play the game that way,” said McGrath at the MRF pace foundation in Chennai.