When Brian Lara took over the thirty something year old record from Sobers, it seemed fitting. Here was a man with all the flair, grace and a thing for the big occasion, not a legend as yet but who has everything to become one taking over the record from another legend. It doesn’t hurt if such a prestigious record changing hands from a legend to another, or one destined to be one. However, when ten or so years later when a certain Hayden decided he should beat the hell out of a hapless Zimbabwe side, breaking the record along the way, it didn’t seem right. The whole cricketing world, or at least the most of it, silently prayed that someone who’s worthy of such a honor will come forth and set things right. Lara duly obliged six months later, and the whole cricketing world breathed a sigh of relief.
But we weren’t so fortunate in the one dayers. When Saeed Anwar, with a runner to assist him, beat the hell out of Indians and took it from the great Viv, again, it wasn’t right. With all due respect to Anwar who was a very good cricketer, he wasn’t in the same caliber as Viv, Lara, Sanath or Sachin. For thirteen long years since, we hoped everyday that someone will again set the things right, and we saw two of the greats of the game, Sanath and Sachin come agonizingly close to it more than once only to see a simple mistake ruining the day. But it wasn’t to be so this time – the great little master ensured that the natural order of things is restored again, and we breathed a sigh of relief.
Thank you Sachin, thank you for that!