Sachin Tendulkar has opted out of the five match one-day series that India is due to play Sri Lanka later in this month and it has raised the debate that whether the great man should have the discretion of choosing series' he wants to play. Sachin has said that the only reason for him to sit out of the series is that he wants to spend some time with his family.
It is not the first time that Sachin has decided to sit out in a series and it not the first instance that people are criticizing his decision. The critics have always said that it is highly unfair on players who replace Sachin in the series he does not play in as those players miss out on the opportunity when the genius decides to try his hand in one-dayers again.
The statement is true at times; players like Rahane who has got the opportunity might miss out when Sachin decides to come back. It is not fair to Rahane because even if plays well, he will have to sit out to make place for the Little Master.
But one should keep one thing in mind before criticizing the genius that whatever he is doing is an attempt to prolong his career and that indirectly is helping the country. Sachin has been the flag bearer for Indian cricket from the past two decades and has earned the right to sit-out in some series. Yes, India and Sri Lanka play a lot of matches and a five match one-day series does not make much sense.
One other thing that Sachin does is that he sits out in the series that India should win even without him. Sachin sat out in the series against West Indies in India and one should keep in mind that at that time he was looking for that elusive 100th hundred, but he decided not to play and that provided an opportunity for the youngsters.
When people say that Sachin’s decision to come and go from the one-day squad is hard on youngsters, they should remember that the youngsters are getting place because Sachin sits out from relatively easy series.Whenever it is up to some ICC events or some tough triangular series, Sachin always makes himself available for it. So in some ways, Sachin plays in most difficult conditions and give opportunity to youngsters when things are not that menacing-and one call that individual selfish?
Another reason why the decision of him opting out of the series does make sense is the the 10 Test matches that India will be playing in the recent future. And it is a well known fact that Indian Test team requires Sachin to play for as long as he can. Rahul Dravid recently retired from international cricket and has joined his long-time friend Sourav Ganguly off the field. There are only two members remaining from the fabulous four of Indian team and one of them, VVS Laxman, is also nearing his end. Sachin is still fit and has it in him to play for another couple of years and for that, if he has to skip some one-day series than he should be allowed to do that without criticism.
By Gaurav Jha
Indian Sports News Network