‘Selfish’ Sachin, Lara
Cricket is known as Gentlemen’s game. Besides, this is the second most following games in the world. 11 players against 11 players this might be the strategy but they play being only one entity.
The final motto is to fight to take victory home. Every player needs to be play cautiously for the sake of the team considering the scoreboard, considering the wickets in hand and mostly keep winning mindset at all.
But sometimes it is seen that players become go selfish and play it for individual achievement. Although this has become common criteria in modern cricket to watch over individual records and statistics. Great players sometimes went selfish for individual interests.
It’s strange that, so Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar two legends also played for own interests and went selfish. Although it’s not wise to say they are ‘selfish’ throughout, but there are certain innings/decisions where their behavior of putting themselves before the greater interest was obscenely evident prior to the team interest. At the same time, it is precisely this obsession of proving themselves great. Which actually kept them interested in the game for career of 15+ years in world cricket.
Brian Lara’s inning of 400, WI’s first inning went on till 4th day morning session of the match. England still suffered the follow-on, but then there wasn’t enough time with WI bowler in England second innings. It has been a question to critics, if Matthew Haydon had not crossed Lara’s earlier record score, would Lara had still kept on batting till 400 score. That was the time Lara went to his interest prior to team interest.
Many people think, Tendulker’s decision to continue after 2011 World Cup, the decision was driven by desire for two records mainly, 100 centuries and 200 Tests as an individual. It’s hard truth that, there were 0 match winning contributions by Sachin after glorious 2011 World Cup. Though in the match where he scored 100th hundred, he slowed down considerably as he approached 100. Consequently, which most likely costed India the match as Bangladesh chased down the target and won the match. \
Retiring at 2011 World Cup at his home ground would have been a really fitting tribute to his dream-like, inspiring career for every upcoming cricketers. The fiasco of hastily arranging 2 Test match series against West Indies so that he plays his 200th Test match at Mumbai will keep on showing world that in India, personal glory is always more acclaimed than greater interest, most of the cricket critics thinks so. On the contrary, Virendra Sehwag, who was actually a key component of India’s Test dominance in late 2000 as his rapid scoring allowed bowlers space to take 20 wickets was denied a decent farewell at the end.
In another incidence, which is not exactly a ‘selfish’ behavior comes to mind to say. Makhaya Ntini bowled final over of the 100th Test match he played. In next match, he was going to retire, South Africa needed one wicket and some other bowler (de Wet) was in red hot form to take that last wicket as he was doing well. But Ntini got the last over and he bowled. Critics think it was an incidence that will perplex those who think about the game rather than the personal interest.