Tendulkar answers critics with match winning 63

February 26th, 2008 - 2:54 pm ICT by admin  

Hobart, Feb 26 (IANS) Sachin Tendulkar hit back at his critics by scoring a valuable 63 and helping India move into the finals of the Commonwealth Bank triangular series by beating Sri Lanka by seven wickets here Tuesday. The 34-year-old batsman, the senior-most player in the team, came under heavy criticism after he failed to get past the single digit in the last three matches. But Tuesday he answered all those critics with his 54-ball innings.

“We played so many games in a row. There are going to be ups and downs but people tend to criticise us. It was only in the last three games that I didn’t get runs,” said the batting maestro.

Following scores of 2, 0 and 5 in the last three matches, the 63 runs Tendulkar scored Tuesday will give him a lot of confidence ahead of the best of the three finals that start Sunday in Sydney.

“Today I wanted to go out and spend some time at the crease. And I started to strike the ball well and it just happened. In other matches also I wanted to spend more time at the middle but unfortunately missed out,” he said.

Asked how it felt to be the senior-most player in the team, Tendulkar shot back: “I am not that old”.

“It’s a lot of fun,” he added. “But we don’t think of age once we are out in the middle. Every player is aware of his responsibilities. I don’t think age is a criterion because no one bowled slow to me when I came into international cricket at the age of 16.”

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