Islamabad, Nov 28: The banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan has asked Pakistani media groups to refrain from praising Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar.
In a video message, Taliban spokesperson Shahidullah Shahid, flanked by two AK-47 wielding masked men, talks about Sachin's farewell to international cricket. "There is this Indian cricket player Sachin Tendulkar. It was unfortunate to see Pakistani media go to great extent to pay tribute to him," Shahid said in the video message.
"On the other hand, it was sad to know same Pakistani media badly criticise captain Misbah-ul-Haq. No matter how good Tendulkar is, don't praise him because he is Indian. No matter how bad Misbah-ul-Haq plays, he should be praised because he is a Pakistani," the video shows the Taliban spokesperson as saying.
The Pakistan media had extensively covered Tendulkar and his farewell speech was covered live. Pakistan media praised Tendulkar after he retired from the game on November 16. Newspapers paid rich tributes to Sachin saying "the game of cricket will surely be the poorer without him".
Dawn wrote Tendulakar's retirement marks the end of a truly memorable career that spanned nearly a quarter of a century. Rated by critics and contemporaries as arguably the greatest postwar batsman to have played the game, Tendulkar continued to rewrite the record books with his brilliant batting skills since making his debut against Pakistan in Karachi way back in 1989, it had said.
The Express Tribune and Daily Times wrote Tendulkar is rightly considered the most complete batsman of his age, possessing every shot in the book and having the ability to both, tear apart bowling attacks and to control his natural aggression to suit the needs of his team. Insaaf, an Urdu daily, wrote Tendulkar like cricketers are not born evey day. His is widely loved and respected. His fans must be sad as "cricket without him is surely the poorer."