Everyone knows that Cricket is a religion and Sachin is its deity in India, right? But something not everyone knows is the sheer value that is at stake when this faith is split between India's blues and Pakistan's greens with its central god in absence.
Well, here is some news. The 'God of Cricket' is certainly not missing in action for this one, not for anything else on the planet. Still revelling in the successful run of his biography and biopic that came out subsequently, Sachin Tendulkar is all set to debut as a commentator for India's Champions League opener against nemesis Pakistan on Sunday.
The little master is going to be a part of the Star Sports panel in what is going to be a one-off commitment between the broadcasters for the massive game and Tendulkar. He is expected to join the Hindi commentary panel as the surprise package for what is touted to be the 'Match of the Champions League' and perhaps the biggest sporting event in the country.
Sachin will be seen in the thick of scenes at Edgbaston, the venue for the match amid other legends including Sunil Gavaskar, Sourav Ganguly and Virender Sehwag. There are going to be other Pakistani commentators joining Saba Karim, who is also in England for the job as well.
According to close sources to the development, "Sachin will only be part of the experts' panel and will not commentate live".
Surely now, the God has to descend to live TV at 3:00 pm today!
Let's hope India wins the battle of the neighbours in England to give the history of all nations involved a subtle taste that lasts long.
So what if the master is not going to be on the pitch? We are still expecting fireworks from his robust commentary on our television sets.
His not out innings of 200 from 147 deliveries against South Africa is reminiscent of the fact that only Tendulkar's divine presence in the stadium could change the course fate takes in a crucial contest that is vying for the world's attention to grab headlines.
Former captains, Sunny Gavaskar and Sourav Ganguly along with Twitter superstar/Batting legend Virender 'Viru' Sehwag are going to join Sachin in the commentary box at the Edgbaston Cricket Ground tomorrow for the big match.
This is an image of greatness that was captured when India and Pakistan last faced each other in Kolkata's Eden Gardens on March 19, 2016, in the World T20 Second Group Stage match which India won convincingly.
The August stadium brought the likes of Sachin, Gavaskar and Sehwag from India and Imran, Wasim and Waqar from Pakistan to be jointly felicitated by CM Mamata Bannerjee.
Legendary Bollywood icon Amitabh Bachchan, presented a glorious rendition of 'Jana Gana Mana...' under the same roof which left everyone spellbound.
Virat Kohli and Sarfraz Khan disclosed their respective teams ahead of the game scheduled for a 3 PM IST start - LIVE on Star Sports
INDIA: Virat Kohli (captain), Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Yuvraj Singh, Kedar Jadhav, Mahendra Singh Dhoni (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Hardik Pandya, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Umesh Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ajinkya Rahane, Dinesh Karthik, Ravichandran Ashwin.
PAKISTAN: Sarfraz Khan (captain and wk), Ahmed Shahzad, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Junaid Khan, Mohammed Amir, Mohammed Hafeez, Shadab Khan, Shoaib Malik, Wahab Riaz.
Hilarious, isn't it?
These two fans of Sachin Tendulkar and Shoaib Akhtar posed for a fun-filled photo in the past before the high-tension matches made everyone watching's heart skip a beat.
Such is the public's devotion and the media's frenzy. Woohoo!
Our captain and modern-day cricketing great Virat Kohli has always echoed, "I started playing cricket because of him and I was inspired to do the things that he did playing for the country,"
He is a pretty special fanboy for Sachin, wouldn't you agree?
Tomorrow is going to be nothing short of EPIC!
India versus Pakistan games have always lived up to a promise not many other events can.
And this one is not going to be any different!
Best of luck to both the teams and as always, 'May the best team prevail'.
Courtesy: Pune Mirror