Legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar on Friday weighed in on the debate around India’s participation in the World Cup group stage match against Pakistan, saying he would “hate” to see India forfeit the encounter and concede two points.
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) 22 February 2019
“India has always come up trumps against Pakistan in the World Cup. Time to beat them once again. Would personally hate to give them two points and help them in the tournament,” Tendulkar said. So far, India has a 100 per cent win record against Pakistan in World Cup matches.
“Having said that, for me, India always comes first. So whatever my country decides, I will back that decision with all my heart,” the batting legend said.
Tendulkar’s remarks echo that of Sunil Gavaskar, who said that Pakistan “wins” if India decides against playing them at the World Cup. “Who wins if India decide against playing Pakistan in the World Cup? And I am not even talking about the semis and the finals. Who wins? Pakistan wins because they get two points,” Gavaskar had told India Today.
“India have so far beaten Pakistan every time in a World Cup, so we are actually conceding two points when by beating Pakistan, we could make sure that they don’t advance in the competition,” he had said.
Last week, Tendulkar was one of many former and current cricketers who condemned the Pulwama terror attack that killed 40 CRPF jawans. “Cowardly, dastardly, meaningless…… my heart goes out to the families of those who lost their loved ones and prayers for the recovery of those brave hearts in hospital. Salute to your commitment to ‘Service and Loyalty’,” Tendulkar tweeted.
The World Cup begins in the United Kingdom on May 30 and India are scheduled to play Pakistan on June 16. The argument to not play Pakistan has found support from former cricketers like Sourav Ganguly and Harbhajan Singh.