Will play till I enjoy the game, says Tendulkar

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Published: Saturday, March 17, 2012, 12:33 [IST]
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Will play till I enjoy the game: Sachin

Dhaka, Mar 17: Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar has ended all the speculations about his retirement, as he said he will play the game till he enjoys it and will not hide it if he wants to retire form international cricket, after scoring his 100th international hundred against Bangladesh here at Dhaka on Friday.

"When I think of retirement I will not hide it. Don't worry about it. I will carry on as long as I enjoy it," said Tendulkar.

Tendulkar also admitted that the phase was tough for him as he had never thought about the milestone. It took him more than a year to score the 100th international

hundred after scoring his 99th ton against South Africa at Nagpur during the World Cup last year.

The joy of achieving the rare feat lasted only a few hours, as India lost the match despite Tendulkar's magnificient knock of 114.

"I can't think of anything at this stage. It has been a tough phase for me. I started off the season batting reasonably well, batted well in Australia without much luck. It doesn't

really matter how many hundreds you score, in the end you have to put your head down and grind it out for the team," said Tendulkar.

He had many a times said that not reaching the milestone had frustrated him and said it again after reaching the rare feat.

"I am a human being and I will be honest. Many a time I was frustrated and it does play on your mind," he said.

"The 100th ton was tough but I don't play for milestones. I just play for the love of the game. The process that started way back in 1989 is still continuing. I still make mistakes after more than 20 years of playing international cricket.

"It was testing time for me and I thank god for whatever has come my way. I don't take things for granted. Whatever score I am batting on, I don't take things for granted. You have to be on your toes. I have to execute the plans of my team. The century was not the only thing that was playing in my mind. I avoided looking at the scoreboard and personal score but kept a track of the run rate."

Though fans and media were concerned about his 100th ton, Sachin says he wasn't thinking too much about it.

"To be honest, I was not really thinking about it. The media started it all. Wherever I went, to the restaurant, room service, housekeeping, everyone was talking about the 100th hundred. It was surprising as nobody talked about my 99 hundreds."

While he also said that the track was slightly different, as he slowed down a bit while reaching the milestone due to this factor.

"It was slightly different, the ball was not coming onto the bat. Virat (Kohli) and I were discussing that 275-280 would be a decent score on this wicket.

"It hasn't sunk in but I have definitely lost about 50 kilos," he quipped when asked about the significance of his achievement.

When asked about the opponents, under-rated team Bangladesh, he said the team is good and people should give importance to them, as they have been in the international arena for quite sometime now.

"Bangladesh is a good underrated team. People still talk of Bangladesh as if they don't know how to play cricket. They way they played against Pakistan is a proof of their good cricket. They have been in international cricket forquite some time."


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