Mumbai, Nov 7: India's cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar, who was conferred with the Order of Australia honour on Tuesday by Simon Crean, Australia's Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government and Minister of Arts at Mumbai, expressed his joy after receiving the honour.
The Master Blaster also revealed that it was the first trip to Australia that changed his cricketing career after making his debut against Pakistan in 1989, during an interaction with the media after receiving the honour.
Sachin Tendulkar, overwhelmed with the honour, stated that it was his first trip to Australia that changed his life as a cricketer, as it was a critical moment of his career. He further added saying that it was those three and a half months that changed his life thoroughly as he was transformed into a tougher cricketer.
Australian tour was a critical moment of my life: Sachin
"I thought I was ready to play against any attack in the world and I can say that Australia has had some contribution in that to transform me into a tougher cricketer," said Sachin Tendulkar after receiving the honour.
Wanted to play in Aus since I was a 12-year-old: Sachin
The 39-year old legendary cricketer also added that it was his dream come true when he toured Australia in 1991-92 as he wanted to play cricket in Australia since he was a 12-year old.
Atmosphere in Aus, was truly fantastic: Sachin
"One had to be there and experience how cricket is played down under. Then the mega event of the World Cup in 1992, we were there for a month. And the kind of atmosphere I saw there was truly fantastic," said Tendulkar recollecting the moments of his first tour to Australia
Moreover, Sachin Tendulkar also revealed that like any other cricketer he had also dreamt of playing in Australia when he was a 12-year-old.
"The association with Australia started long time ago and not in 1991. To me it started way back in 85 when I was 12 years old watching those fantastic day-night matches on television. I started dreaming that one day I want to go there and play cricket. It turned into a reality in 1991-92," he said.
Sachin got nostalgic when he spoke about his association with Australia, the most memorable trip, his favourite ground in Australia and many more.
The cricketer also revealed that he enjoys playing at Sydney Cricket Ground, as he got an opportunity to hold Donald Bradman's bat used by the Australian legend, and the Australians' admiration for Sachin as they wanted him to score a century though they did not like someone score a century against Australia.
"It is a wonderful spot to play cricket. I have to say publicly that away from India, it is the best spot I have enjoyed playing cricket. And away from India, Sydney is my favourite ground.
"The 2007 trip was very special because wherever I went, whenever I went to bat, the entire stadium gave me standing ovation. It was touching, something which will always stay with me for the rest of my life.
"Who knows I might be again going to Australia to play cricket or just as a tourist, because I love that spot," said the cricketing legend who has scored 15,533 runs off 190 Tests and 18,426 runs off 463 ODIs.