120 crore Indians accompanied Sachin Tendulkar with teary eyes and a lump as he walked into a golden, sporting sunset and back to the pavillion on the Wankhede Stadium. It marks the culmination of an adjective-defying career that had started exactly 24 years ago in 1989.
On day one, Sachin was 38 not out and looked determined to play a big one. But India spent a sleepless Thursday night, tossing around in bed thinking whether Sachin will get the 12 runs to get to his fifty and then 50 more to complete his 101st century.
But all good things come to an end and those at the Wankhede enjoyed Sachin's grand exit to the T. A standing ovation followed as the master turned around to acknowledge the cheer. The Tendulkar clan was on its feet, while his mother and coach Ramakant Achrekar prayed with moist eyes. Arjun, his son, was clapping too as a ball boy at the boundary ropes - doing what his father had done in the 1987 World Cup.
Thank you Sachin !