‘What it takes to win a Billion Hearts & a Billion Rupees’

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1st July 2024

The feeling of elation & the Hangover of the amazing victory by Team India still persists.

While wondering & reading about what made it possible & how it was done perfectly, it was definitely something that goes beyond talent and attitude.

Gary Kirsten, the former India team coach, spoke about it long ago and it’s something we could all learn and benefit from.

Towards the end of Kirsten’s stint as India coach, Cricinfo spoke to him about all things cricket and of course when the discussion veered to Tendulkar and what made him special.

Here’s what Kirsten had to say: ‘Tendulkar studies the whole book for the exam! He does not leave anything to chance. He will never finish a net session till he has made sure he has done everything that he feels is required to get ready for the next match. Sometimes it means facing three hundred balls in the nets, sometimes fifteen hundred balls!’

Wow! Think about it, after 25 years of top-class cricket, he still used to study ‘the whole book for the exam!’

If he scored a hundred in a Test match, he’d probably end up facing from a hundred and fifty to two hundred balls and yet, in practice, he could end up facing fifteen hundred balls. How many of us do that in our lives?

Several talented folks with a solid track record behind them begin to think that they can wing it past any challenge, that they don’t need to prepare any more, And that sets them up for failure.

Most of us grow up looking for shortcuts. What’s the least effort we need to put in to get by?

But as Tendulkar showed, and Virat, Rohit, Bumrah, Pant and other team members followed, the truly great guys ask a different set of questions of themselves: ‘What more can I do to succeed?

Have I done all I can to take care of any eventuality?’

Their results are driven by hard work and not just talent or attitude.

They are also driven by sweat, tears and toil, not just God-gifted talents or luck.

As we’ve seen before, success happens when preparation meets opportunity.

The opportunity comes to us all. The question is, how prepared are we when opportunity comes knocking?

Take a leaf from Team India’s book, sweat it out, Prepare, never mind how successful you are, remember, every dawn brings a new day.

We may not all have Tendulkar’s or Virat’s talent, or their mental strength, but we can all adopt their work ethic.

Slog, remember to study the whole book for the exam & stay blessed forever.

Will you?