Geraint Hughes watches on as Indian fans come to terms with Sachin Tendulkar's dismissal
Last Updated: 16/11/13 10:45am
Geraint Hughes watches on as Indian cricket fans come to terms with Sachin Tendulkar's dismissal on day two of his final Test match in Mumbai.
At 10.41am, Mumbai local time, a silence falls over the city.
Sachin Tendulkar, looking sublime for his 74no, edges to West Indies skipper Darren Sammy at first slip. Sammy almost appears sad in taking the catch. Most in the ground, around the country, thought it was Tendulkar's destiny to score a century during his final Test appearance, but if Sammy has any regrets, those feelings can be multiplied many times over by the thousands of India supporters watching on at the Wankhede stadium.
Within five minutes of the Little Master's dismissal, many of the 35,000 crowd are leaving. I am slightly taken aback by this. I knew Sachin was the main attraction and I've seen many an Indian cricket ground empty and fill depending on whether he is batting, but on his final appearance?
I ask why people were leaving and I cannot believe the outpouring of emotion. I have to put my arms around the shoulder of one gentleman as the tears flow.
"It's not out of disrespect that I am leaving, it is out of honour. I have seen my God play for the last time and I can no longer watch, he is my inspiration and helped me make my life successful."
I can't really argue with that. All I want to do is hug the guy, give him a cup of tea and tell him everything will be alright. Some Kleenex would be handy as well; he can't stop crying.
Others I speak to are more pragmatic: "I only came to see Sachin, I have to get back to the office. I was meant to have a meeting this morning, but I got a ticket at 1.30am so I got the meeting cancelled!"
So there you have it - it's either all too much to bear, or it's time to get to work.