While Sachin Tendulkar was on the field on the first day of his final Test at the Wankhede Stadium, his family played hosts to nearly 500 of their special invitees; from Sachin’s revered coaches to the family’s friends; from their maid to their dutiful guards; ensuring that the guests felt at home at the Vittal Divecha Pavilion.
Among those Tendulkar had given passes were friends from Sahitya Niwas Colony where he grew up, and with whom he used to play neighbourhood cricket.
Ajit Tendulkar, Sachin’s elder brother, who has rarely watched h
im bat at a stadium, surrounded himself with Sachin’s former teammates, including medium-pacer Prashant Vaidya and wicketkeeper Sameer Dighe, at the Divecha Pavilion as nerves jangled when the master walked out to bat at 77 for 2 after tea.
Sachin’s son Arjun and daughter Sara too made their way from the President’s Box to what literally became the second Sachin Tendulkar stand at the Wankhede.
Cricket mimic Vikram Sathaye, who was at the stadium, said, Tendulkar’s family made it a point to come down and sit with us
in the Divecha Pavilion. Ajit and Sameer Dighe personally ensured that we were all comfortable and were enjoying the historic moment. A fortnight ago, I had texte
d Sachin and asked him if it might be possible for me to watch his last match. He replied, Yes, collect your tickets from Anjali. Sachin has invited everyone from his Sahitya Niwas colony, his close friends and all those who matter to him.
The family also distributed caps and T-shirts bearing the SRT logo. Wife Anjali Tendulkar, however, stayed back in the President’s Box along with her mother and mother-in-law, and hid her emotions behind a pair of dark glasses.
The Tendulkar family had requested the Mumbai Cricket Association to allot them passes in a covered stand, so that those whom Sachin invited could sit in the shade.
-the Indian News