Pakistan hails India's record-breaking Tendulkar

Published: Saturday, October 18, 2008, 13:50 [IST]
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Pakistan cricket greats Saturday showered praise on Indian batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar becoming Test cricket's leading run-maker, saying his feat is a matter of pride for the sub-continent.

Tendulkar overtook retired West Indian Brian Lara's tally of 11,953 runs on the first day of the second Test against Australia at Mohali on Friday.

Tendulkar hit a brilliant 88 to take his run aggregate to 12,027 in his 152nd Test.

Former captain of arch-rivals Pakistan Wasim Akram said Tendulkar was the best among the best.

"I definitely rate him alongside Lara, Sunil Gavaskar, Viv Richards and Ricky Ponting," Wasim told AFP. "Tendulkar is the best of all time."

Wasim, who led Pakistan's bowling attack when Tendulkar made his Test debut in Karachi in 1989, said Tendulkar displayed his class right from the start.

"As a 16-year-old he showed the talent to go places and hinted that he would play for 20 years and break all records."

Wasim said he valued Tendulkar's wicket above all others.

"Since he hated to lose his wicket, his was always a prized scalp," said Wasim, who holds the record for most one-day wickets with 502.

Former batting legend Javed Miandad said Tendulkar's "achievement was a matter of great pride for Asia."

Miandad said Gavaskar told him about Tendulkar's talent before the 1989 series.

"Gavaskar told me that Tendulkar was a player who could make his mark and would create records. It is now for youngsters to follow Tendulkar's footsteps," said Miandad who scored 8,832 runs in 124 Tests -- the most by a Pakistani.

Another former great, Zaheer Abbas, said Tendulkar's record was likely to last.

"He (Tendulkar) has set records which will be hard to break," said Abbas, who was called the Asian Bradman for his batting. "It is a great achievement and I congratulate him for being the doyen of batsmen."

Current Pakistan paceman Shoaib Akhtar saluted Tendulkar.

"It is a great honour for me that I have played at a time when greats like Tendulkar, Lara, Ponting and Adam Gilchrist have been on the field.

"The world of cricket will not be the same when Tendulkar retires. He is not only a great player but a great man," said Akhtar, one of only four bowlers who got the Indian legend for a first-ball duck in Tests.

"Getting him out for nought is always a moment I cherish."

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