The former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe has rated legendary Sachin Tendulkar as a better cricketer than the great Sir Vivian Richards. Crowe mentioned that the excellent footwork of the little master and his unique ability to keep the things simple was impressive.
Crowe was speaking to ESPN Cricinfo after the ceremony wherein Sachin Tendulkar was facilitated as the cricketer of the generation. He fondly remembered seeing a 16-year-old Sachin dealing with bowlers like Richard Hadlee in a fairly easy manner.
Crowe said, “Viv was the best batsman I saw in my 14 years of playing Test cricket, along with Greg Chappell and Sunny Gavaskar. Since I have retired, I have seen someone better and that is Sachin. What I have seen is that Sachin had two things. He had footwork. While Viv Richards’ footwork lasted 15 years, Sachin went a decade longer, almost. The greatest mind along with Sir Don Bradman’s has been Sachin’s, because he kept everything so simple.”
He added, “Simplicity was the hallmark of his game and his footwork was poetry in motion and that is why he stood out against all the players and he is someone whom we would revere for a long long time. This 16-year-old came out and I thought how is he going to cope with the world record holder Richard Hadlee. I just thought it was unfair. Sachin didn’t have to worry about that because he nicked the first ball from Danny Morrison and got his first duck in Test cricket.”
He also said, “In Napier, he scored a beautiful 88. The thing that caught my mind was his footwork. I knew that footwork was the hallmark of scoring runs. I watched this 16-year-old move his feet like I had never seen before another 16-year-old doing. I did have an inkling, just by the way he moved, that it was going to be a phenomenal Test career. I just didn’t know it was going to be over 24 years.”
It is heartening to note that this gentlemen cricketer is still fondly remembered by one and all.