Sachin Tendulkar is the most loved cricketer of the Indian soil. His achievements helped him earn that distinction among the Indian cricket fans. There were time when the Indian line-up was dependent on the batting of Sachin Tendulkar and fans would stick their eyes on the television sets just to watch the master blaster bat. However, there were claims that Sachin Tendulkar was a selfish cricketer, who played for his personal records, and would go on to hit centuries in a match where India would eventually finish as the losing side.
But the records and achievements overshadows every criticism that come in Tendulkar’s way. His innings, match-winning or not, are etched in the minds of Indian fans. Tendulkar has been a household name for the Indian cricket since the 90s. But his captaincy stints were a no-match to his batting prowess and by his own admission the 1997 Test against the West Indies in Barbados was one of the ‘darkest days’ in his legendary career.
‘Sachin Tendulkar threatened Sourav Ganguly to send him back home and end his career’
Sachin Tendulkar led Team India to 98 matches across formats. His dismal captaincy record saw the national team clinch 27 wins and 52 losses. He could only win 28 percent of his matches as a captain. But the Barbados Test thrashing in 1997 was the ‘worst loss’ of them all.
India were set a target of 120 runs to chase by the West Indies, and when umpires called it a day on Day 3, the visiting side were at 2/0. Tendulkar was confident of a win and that night, he told a restaurant owner to keep a champagne ready for their party after the victory.
However, on a rough track, where Indian batsmen failed to play responsibly and the greats Curtly Ambrose and Ian Bishop were on top of their games, the Tendulkar-led side were bundled out for 81 runs.
This is how the situation unfolded in the dressing room as narrated by Aaj Tak Sports Editor Vikrant Gupta:
“Sachin also gave a lesson to all the players in the dressing room, doubting himself on his abilities after the two-Test series. Sourav Ganguly, who was new to the team went up to console the skipper. When he walked up to Sachin, the then captain told him to get ready for the next day’s morning run. Ganguly did not turn up for it and that is when Sachin threatened him that he will send him back home and end his career,” Vikrant Gupta said on a YouTube video for SportsTak.
After that day, Ganguly worked hard and made sure he never gives Tendulkar a chance to thrash him.