MUMBAI: Dents on a car are not known to please its owner but Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar calls the ones on his “happy dents” as they are a reminder of his first and only World Cup triumph.
Celebrating his 45th birthday on Tuesday, the batting maestro recalled how his dented car added to the joy the day India won its second ODI World Cup, in 2011 — a personal first for him in a record sixth appearance at the marquee tournament.
“After we won the World Cup, Anjali (Tendulkar), being superstitious, didn’t want to be at the ground. I called her and said ‘what are you doing at home? You got to be here in the dressing room, we are all celebrating’,” Tendulkar recalled at the launch of cricket writer Boria Majumdar’s book ‘Eleven Gods and a Billion Indians’ on Monday.
“Somehow she (Anjali) made it to the stadium and while she was getting there, just outside the stadium, people were dancing, celebrating, jumping on top of the cars.”
However, the delirious celebrations came to a halt the moment fans recognised Mrs Tendulkar.
“…they said ‘we can’t touch this car, we can’t do anything on this car’. Somehow she gets inside the stadium and then we were all celebrating in the dressing room and when it was time to go back to the hotel I looked at the car and wondered how there were dents on the roof of the car,” he said.
“The driver said that ‘after I dropped madam, everyone started jumping and dancing on the top of the car’, so I said ‘these dents will always remind of that wonderful moment at the World Cup’ so, I call them ‘Happy Dents’,” he added.
The eve of his birthday was also exactly 20 years since Tendulkar demolished Australia in Sharjah, in what is famous as ‘Desert Storm’.
Those two innings in Sharjah — a 143 and a 134 – when a young Tendulkar took on the likes of Shane Warne, Damien Fleming among others, are regarded as some of his best knocks.