Sachin Tendulkar inspired me to make a comeback: Sardar Singh
He was low on confidence after the Commonwealth Games (CWG) snub earlier this year, but a telephonic chat with the iconic Sachin Tendulkar motivated Sardar Singh to work hard towards regaining his place in the national team.
Sardar, 32, walked into the sunset on Wednesday after a glorious 12-year career following a disastrous Asian Games campaign, where India failed to defend its title and returned home with a consolation bronze.
Left out of India’s squad for this year’s Gold Coast CWG, Sardar sought advise from Tendulkar and the legend’s tips worked wonders for the former
captain as he made a successful comeback into the side for the Champions Trophy, where he helped India win a historic silver.
“Sachin paaji has been an inspiration for me. He helped me a lot in the last 3-4 months, which were tough,” Sardar told reporters during his first interaction here with reporters post retirement.
“There has never been an occasion when he didn’t answer my call. After I was dropped from the CWG squad, I was very low and called Sachin paaji and asked him what he used to do when he scored a zero.
“He counselled me for close to 20 minutes and advised me to forget about criticisms and stay motivated and focused. He told me to analyse my old videos, play my natural hockey and it helped me in bouncing back,” he added.
Sardar was a livewire in the midfield during his 12-year stellar career in which he led India to the Asian Games gold in Incheon (2014) besides two bronze medals in 2010 and 2018. He won two Commonwealth Games silver, a silver in the Champions Trophy (2018, Breda), two Asia Cup titles and numerous other trophies.