Chennai, Feb 26: A smallish crowd at the MA Chidambaram Stadium waited, waited and waited for that moment to arrive. It was not about India's victory on Tuesday but a man batting who has enthralled them over the years - Sachin Tendulkar.
The Chennai crowd wanted to see Tendulkar bat - probably for the last time at this venue. Their wish was granted, thanks to Virender Sehwag.
It is rare to see home crowd cheering at the fall of their team's wicket. But if that brings a certain Tendulkar to the crease, those sentiments will be kept aside.
The same happened on Tuesday as Sehwag edged a Nathan Lyon delivery to slip and Michael Clarke accepted the catch. The wait was over. In walked Tendulkar. And what a statement he made with the bat.
First ball he faced from Lyon was dispatched over the boundary. In came the second ball, same result. Two balls, two sixes. What a way to start your innings. This might have been the first instance in his 195-Test career that he began his innings with two sixes. Vintage stuff.
Those two blows took India closer to victory and just two runs were needed to achieve the target of 50. Tendulkar added a single and faced the next over from Peter Siddle with scores level.
Tendulkar had a great chance of hitting the winning runs, but with all the fielders staying closer, he played out a maiden. And next over, Cheteshwar Pujara edged past the wicketkeeper Matthew Wade and a single was taken and curtains came down on the game. India had won by eight wickets. Tendulkar was 13 not out off 10 balls.
Before Tendulkar started to walk out to the middle, he waited outside the pavilion with the pads on. The giant screen at the venue flashed his face few times and every time he appeared on the screen, crowd roared in joy.
The joy Tendulkar provides for the Indian fan is immense. On Tuesday, few thousands at the ground and millions on TV were on a high watching the Master bat for a brief period.