Gwalior: It was Sachin Tendulkar at his very best by a long mile — his divine knock at Sharjah, 14 years ago, included. On Wednesday at Gwalior in front of a packed Captain Roop Singh Stadium, the Master Blaster officially penned his name on a truly unique batting record, becoming the first batsman to hit the 200-run-mark.
Sachin carried his bat, facing 147 balls for his colossal 200 not out (25×4, 3 x6) in India’s 401/3 in 50 overs. He added 194 with Dinesh Karthik (79) for the second wicket and an unbeaten 101 for the fourth wicket with Dhoni (68 n.o.)
In reply, South Africa managed 248 in 43 overs this time, falling to a 153-run loss as AB de Villiers’ played a lone hand with a fighting 114 not out.
Speaking after the match, Sachin said he sensed he could be the first batsman to hit an ODI double century only after he had reached 175 in the second one dayer against South Africa. “In the first half an hour, I was striking the ball well and timing well. The ball was coming nicely on to the bat,” Sachin said.
“I was not thinking about it all along. It was only when I crossed 175 and realised that it was still the 42nd over, I felt I have an opportunity. So I decided to take singles and give strike to Dhoni who was hitting so well,” Sachin said.
On his epic knock, Sachin said, “I don’t know how to react. I’d like to dedicate this double-hundred to the people of India for standing behind me for the last 20 years, come what may.”
Sachin said he expected India to score in the vicinity of 340-350 but it was the big-hitting spree of Dhoni and Yusuf Pathan which took the team to 401/3. “If you look at the partnerships, every over there played big shots. Yusuf changed the momentum and MS finished well,” Sachin said.
Sehwag c Steyn b Parnell 9, Tendulkar n.o. 200, Karthik c Gibbs b Parnell 79, Pathan c de Villiers b Van der Merwe 36, Dhoni n.o. 68.
Extras (lb-3, w-5, nb-1) 9
Total (in 50 overs) 401/3
FoW: 1-25, 2-219, 3-300.
Bowling: Steyn 10-0-89-0, Parnell 10-0-95-2, van der Merwe 10-0-62-1, Langeveldt 10-0-70-0, Duminy 5-0-38-0, Kallis 5-0-44-0.
Amla c Nehra b Sreesanth 34, Gibbs b Praveen 7, R. van der Merwe c Raina b Sreesanth 12, Kallis b Nehra 11, de Villiers n.o. 114, Petersen b Jadeja 9, Duminy lbw Yusuf 0, Boucher lbw Yusuf 14, Parnell b Nehra 18, Steyn b Sreesanth 0, Langeveldt c Nehra b Jadeja 12.
Extras (nb-4, lb-5, w-8) 17
Total (in 42.5 overs) 248/10
FoW: 1-17, 2-47, 3-61, 4-83, 5-102, 6-103, 7-134, 8-211, 9-216, 10-248.
Bowling: Praveen 5-0-31-1, Nehra 8-0-60-2, Sreesanth 7-0-49-3, Jadeja 8.5-0-41-2, Yusuf 9-1-37-2, Sehwag 5-0-25-0.
What they said
* Sachin Tendulkar has yet again re-written the record books of cricket, by climbing yet another Mt Everest of the game.
President Pratibha Patil
* Magnificent knock. You have led by example and all Indians are proud of your achievement.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
* My heartiest congratulations to Sachin the world’s greatest sportsman. We can see him only rise. Inspiration to us all. I salute Sachin.
Lalit Modi on Twitter
* He is the greatest batsman the game has ever seen. Who else has got 90-plus centuries, 17000-plus runs in ODIs and 13000-plus runs in Test cricket?
* Yes yes yes!!!!!! Well done Sachin my friend … congrats !!!! Awesome …
Shane Warne on Twitter
* Records are there to be broken but it makes you happy when someone like Tendulkar does it. I think he thoroughly deserves this record and many more in days to come
* Congratulations Sachin:) proud to be Indian and a sports person in his era! Wooww!
Sania Mirza on Twitter
* 200 not out: Sachin Tendulkar (Ind) vs South Africa in Gwalior on February 24, 2010.
* 194 not out: Charles Coventry (Zim) vs Bangladesh in Bulawayo on August 16, 2009.
* 194: Saeed Anwar (Pak) vs India in Chennai on May 21, 1997
* 189 not out: Viv Richards (WI) vs England in Manchester on May 31, 1984.
* 189: Sanath Jayasuriya (SL) vs India in Sharjah on October 29, 2000.