Sachin Tendulkar may be regarded as cricket’s ‘God’ and the world may see him the best-ever batsman of his generation, but he is still an ‘unknown’ quantity in the world of sports. That cricket’s global ‘appeal’ is rather limited is well illustrated by the fact that Grand Slam champion and tennis queen Maria Sharapova doesn’t even know who Tendulkar is! Considering the fact that Tendulkar is quite a ‘regular’ visitor at Wimbledon and good friends with Roger Federer, it comes as quite a surprise that Sharapova is oblivious of a man who has broken almost every batting record in cricket.
Tendulkar was in the Royal Box in Wimbledon on Saturday. He was not the only celebrity sportsperson in that exclusive space. David Beckham and golfer Ian Poulter were also present. When Sharapova was asked at her post-match press conference if she knew that a cricket icon had come to see her play, the five-time Grand Slam champion said she had met Beckham a few times but wasn’t familiar with Tendulkar.
Tennis World reports that when Sharapova was asked: “Sachin Tendulkar was the other person who came in at the same time as David. Do you know who Sachin is?” The French Open winner flatly replied: “I don’t.”
On Beckham, the Russian tennis star said: “I’ve actually met him a couple times at events in LA and in London. He is a great guy. Besides being an incredible football player, he has done so much in his career, having a family, maintaining so many things off the court. He is a really nice person to chat to. We’re not best friends or anything, but it’s nice to be able to say hello and congratulate each other on achievements we’ve had in our careers and so on.”
Sharapova also said that the one sportsman she got star-struck while meeting was basketball legend Michael Jordan.