Sachin Tendulkar with Australian women cricket players in Sydney. File
Kohli is widely regarded as Tendulkar’s second coming in Indian cricket and the “Delhi Dasher” has already broken few records set by his idol as well.
Despite acknowledging Kohli as a modern-day phenomenon, Akhtar stated Tendulkar came up against tougher oppositions and that is why comparison cannot be made between the two.
“Tendulkar batted in the toughest era of cricket. If he had to get the chance now, he may hit more than 1.30 lakh runs. So it’s not good to make a comparison between Sachin and Kohli,” Akhtar said during a live video session on Helo app.
Akhtar also revealed he wanted Tendulkar to complete a century during their famous 2003 World Cup clash against India. Tendulkar got out on 98 with Akhtar accounting for his scalp. Riding on Tendulkar’s fine innings, India won the match by six wickets in Centurion.
“I was very sad because Sachin got out for 98. It was special innings, he should have touched the century mark,” Akhtar said. “I wanted him to get a century. For that bouncer, I would have loved to see a sixer, as earlier he hit.”
Meanwhile, Akhtar believes playing cricket before empty stands would be without much excitement and something difficult to market.
Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many sports have resumed behind closed doors and cricket is also supposed to be played like that in the near future so as to contain the spread of novel coronavirus.
“Playing cricket in the empty stadiums may be viable and durable for cricket boards. But I do not think we can market this. Playing cricket in an empty stadium is like marriage without a bride. We need crowds to play games. I hope the corona situation will be normalised within a year,” Akhtar told Helo Live session.
Earlier, India skipper Virat Kohli had also said that it would be difficult to re-create the magic and the excitement of playing in a packed stadium while playing behind closed doors.
The Rawalpindi Express was taken to the cleaners in that game as he leaked 72 runs in his 10 overs. But the gun-quick saw the back of Tendulkar who got to his 98 in just 75 deliveries, his innings laced with 12 fours and a six.
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