Recently, like most of you, I’ve had all 99 of Sachin Tendulkar’s 99 international hundreds tattooed onto the inside of my eyelids.
It’s the ultimate mark of respect for Sachin, and only non believers would do less.
But every time I went to sleep, something bothered me.
One hundred seemed to be missing.
Sometime in 1998 I seem to remember Sachin making a hundred against New Zealand or Sri Lanka in Asia or the middle east or something.
It was about 107 off 144 balls on a pitch that was slower than you’d think, but Sachin had the requisite skill, patience and courage to get through it.
I seem to remember some exquisite drives, awesome work off his pads and he was particularly harsh on the spinners. Yeah, you remember it too, don’t you.
It wasn’t the best innings of his career, nor the worst, it was just a purely forgettable ODI knock that for some reason, was never put into the ICC database.
Things like that happened all the time, Ian Harvey’s 7 wicket haul against South Africa was never recorded either. There was a lot of meaningless cricket in the late 90s, unlike now, and things got missed.
The good news is, with this hundred rightfully recognised, it means that Sachin has made 100 international hundreds.
I knew you could do it, Sachin, or should I say, I knew you’d done it, Sachin.
What an achievement, imagine how old and good you need to be to do that, pretty good, very old.
Now Sachin doesn’t need to feel awkward from the moment he raises his bat at 50, web site designers don’t have to change the formatting of stats pages to have number of international hundreds on them and the rest of us can go back to not caring how many international hundreds batsmen have.
So, it’s all-good now, yeah.
Hail Sachin, the king of kings, the 100 of hundreds, the grand poohbah of the willow, you are statistically freaky in the best possible way.
But no need for too much celebrations, because you scored your 100th 100 ages ago, and it was grand, I’m sure, I just don’t really remember it.
Unlike this 107 in Asia, or the middle east, against Sri Lanka, or New Zealand, around 199, or so, which I remember very clearly.