Bangalore: Yuvraj Singh, who’d dedicated his Player of the Tournament award after the 2011 World Cup to Sachin Tendulkar, turned very emotional while speaking to The Telegraph at the ITC Gardenia on Sunday evening.
Also emotional, but to a lesser degree, was Virat Kohli. But, then, that’s his make-up — tough both from the outside and within. Virat also spoke exclusively.
The following are excerpts
YUVRAJ: It’s an emotional day for me, very emotional... It’s tough to describe my feelings... It’s hard reconciling to the fact that Sachin won’t be there in the (ODI) dressing room... He always had time for the younger members of the team and we could go to him freely... One has learnt so much from him, from sharing the dressing room with him... Just look at his runs and records, absolutely jaw-dropping... Besides being a great cricketer, Sachin’s a great human being. That, for me, stands out... I haven’t spoken to Sachin, but have sent him a message... People may speculate over what he has in mind where Test cricket is concerned, but we should let him be... Leave it to Sachin, please, to decide his future.
VIRAT: Actually, it’s a weird feeling... Knowing that Sachin won’t be there in the ODIs... Like so many others, I grew up watching him... Following his career... I was a year old only when he made his India debut and, so, I grew up in the Sachin Tendulkar era... I consider myself fortunate that I could share the dressing room with him and also have partnerships in the middle... One respects Sachin’s decision, but he’ll be missed... He’ll remain an icon.