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Don't tell me when to retire: Tendulkar

Cricketnext.com
Mar 25, 2012 at 07:06pm IST

Mumbai: Sachin Tendulkar insists he has no more dreams to chase. The India batsman, who recently completed his 100th international ton after a long wait and has been at the centre of retirement speculation ever since, said now he just wants to enjoy the game.

"I don't think I need to prove anything right now. I started playing this game because I loved it, I enjoy it. The passion for cricket was there. The dream was to play for India and win the World Cup, I don't think anything can be bigger than that," Tendulkar said at a function here on Sunday.

"I can't think of milestones. I have been able to play for India and win the World Cup. I don't know what is in store for me but my focus would be to just enjoy the game. I don't want to focus on what I have to achieve because I have already achieved what I wanted."

Tendulkar also reiterated that he did not want to be told when to retire, even going as far as to comment that he was the best judge of his career.

"No one should tell me when to retire. I will play till I have the desire," he said. "I feel that when I retire is something that I would decide because when I started it was not decided by someone else.

"Those who are advising me about retirement did not bring me in the team.

I get my strength from my coaches and family. When I feel I don't have that, on that day, I will think of retirement. I feel those who say you should retire at the top are selfish because when you are at the top, you should serve the country instead of retiring," he said.

Tendulkar, 38, also blamed the media for putting too much emphasis on his historic ton over the last one year.

"It was the media which built pressure after the 99th century and due to this media pressure many people started asking me about it, and I felt cricket should be first and not this target," he said. "It was a tough phase; it was continuous pressure, now I am happy that it's gone."

Tendulkar, who played his first Test in 1989 against Pakistan, said of all his achievements being nominated in Don Bradman’s all-time Test XI flattered him the most. "To be named in Don Bradman's all-time Test XI is the biggest compliment," he said.

One thing he refused to comment on, however, was the controversial rotation policy India employed during the CB Series in Australia. "I don't want to make loose statements on the rotation policy, please ask the individuals who want to comment on it," he said.

Asked whether his feat of 100 centuries could be surpassed, Tendulkar said, "I guess all the records are meant to be broken but I hope it's an Indian. I don't think you can predict that (whether it will be surpassed) but I hope it's an Indian whenever it happens."

Tendulkar also said hinted that he might play in the next World Cup in 2015. "When this question was asked in 2007 (about the 2011 World Cup), it was tough for me to answer. It's the same situation," he said.

"I don't know what to say about 2015, if people keep praying for me, that means a lot for me. I will keep trying, the rest is in God's hands. I just want to enjoy the game. I don't want to set targets."

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