Bangalore, Nov 12: When Sachin Tendulkar scored the first ever double hundred in the history of One Day Internationals, one man had the best view on the ground. Shahvir Tarapore, the Indian umpire was among the few lucky ones to witness the Master Blaster closely on that day.
The 55-year-old Tarapore, who has officiated in 4 Tests, 25 ODIs and 3 T20Is, praised the retiring Tendulkar for "great humility" and described him as "very approachable".
"Sachin Tendulkar's great humility stands out and he is very approachable. I have never seen him ever react to an umpire's decision whether it is good or bad. He holds umpires in high esteem," Tarapore told ThatsCricket on Tuesday.
Tendulkar will quit international cricket after playing his 200th Test against West Indies in Mumbai from November 14.
Bangalorean Tarapore has umpired is some of the most memorable Tendulkar matches in the 50-over format. His first ODI as an umpire in Hyderabad, 1999, saw Tendulkar register his highest ODI score at the time - 186 not out against New Zealand.
"It was my ODI debut in Hyderabad in 1999. Tendulkar scored 186 not out against New Zealand. This is my best Sachin moment," said Tarapore.
On the historic 200 not out in Gwalior against South Africa, Tarapore explains, "Tendulkar was brilliant on that day. He started slow but played some astounding shots. His one shot between cover point and cover with an open face of the bat, fielders just did not move. It is still fresh in my memory."
Apart 186 not out and unbeaten 200 of Tendulkar's knocks, Tarapore was also the on-field umpire when he scored 175 against Australia in Hyderabad in 2009.
Tarapore, who represented Karnataka in six first-class matches as a legspinner, was also handed the honour of officiating in Tendulkar's final Ranji Trophy game for Mumbai against Haryana in Lahli last month.
"It was another milestone for me (Lahli match). He played according to the situation. What stood out in the second innings (79 not out) was him taking different guards for different bowlers," he said.
When queried whether he feels the pressure when umpiring against Tendulkar, he says no.
"No, because I am doing my job which I concentrate on, irrespective of the players."