Bangalore : Want to make it big in cricket ? Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar has a tip, follow the "Wall" Rahul Dravid. "He (Dravid) is a perfect role model for youngsters. He has set a great example for all of us to follow. We are all trying to follow that path," Tendulkar told cricket fans releasing the biography on Rahul Dravid authored by sports writer Vedam Jaishankar at a function on Tuesday.
"He is a solid batsman and one of the top players of the world, who I really admire," Tendulkar said, adding that the first time he saw Dravid was in 1994-95 at Rajkot, when a common friend Amol Mazumdar pointing to the Karnataka lad said, "he is the one to watch out for, he is going to get runs and is going to make it big". "Then I had said, he is good. We have to see him," Tendulkar said, adding, "now the whole world has seen him" to an applause from the audience, including Sadanand Vishwanath, B K Venkatesh Prasad and Dodda Ganesh. Admiring Dravid's dedication and sacrifice for the game, Tendulkar said the Vice-Captain was "very sincere and very honest".
Recalling Tendulkar's game in an under-15 tournament at Cuttack in 1986 where he scored a good knock for West Zone against South Zone, Dravid said Tendulkar's standards were what he had set for to be a good cricketer. "I still remember that I coming from Bangalore, the 13 or 14 year old hotshot, scoring lot of runs in school cricket that I was a very good cricketer. But what I saw in the young boy (Sachin) from Mumbai, he was absolutely brilliant," Dravid said.
"Then I realised that day, so I really wanted to play cricket and I wanted to be a good cricketer, these are the standards I had to set for myself," he said, pointing that this was some of the tid bits mentioned in the biography. Stating that he was "totally embarrassed" by the appreciation showered by speakers including sports writer Suresh Menon and St Joseph's School Principal Father Michael John S J Dravid said, over a period of time lot of things get exaggerated. "If you do something's nice or well, by the time you are 30 years, you make it sound that you have done absolutely fantastic.
All these things said about me by a lot of people are possibly exaggerated, so when you read this book, read everything with a pinch of salt," he said. Father John said Dravid was a loyal friend and a great ambassador who visited home of the aged or spastics society to meet children whenever he had time. "There are young people here who can take him as a role model. A role model who has done tremendous achievement and hard work," he said.