Mumbai, Nov.14 (ANI): On the eve of completing two decades in international cricket, Indian batting ace Sachin Tendulkar has said that for him the greatest high in life was walking out with the Indian team for his first Test against Pakistan in Karachi on November 15, 1989.
The 36-year-old will join a list of 15 players whose international careers have spanned more than 20 years when he plays in the first Test against Sri Lanka in Ahmedabad from Monday (November 16).
"The first day walking in the playing eleven, playing a test match with Pakistan was the greatest feeling... and the journey began...and whatever I did after that was a mere reflection of my contribution towards the nation of course but the first...first experience definitely has to be right at the top," Tendulkar told reporters here on Friday.
Tendulkar has been the face of Indian cricket since his Test debut in November 1989.
Tendulkar thanked his family for not letting him get carried away by his early success.
"The earlier stage of my career, when I had not played for India, I was just playing school cricket, I was since scoring lot of runs but nobody got carried away in my family by my success. It's quite easy for a 12-year, 13-year old boy to get carried away when he sees pictures printing in the newspapers, that's something special, but that's where you know ...I felt, may family made sure that my mind...is on the ground," the batting maestro said.
Tendulkar said he owed his character to his father who instilled good virtues in him.
"There is something which has kept me grounded, then needless to say that watching my father, my father has really... to teach me but by just looking at him closely, I picked up lot of things, the most important thing that he told me was your nature will stay permanently with you and if you are a good person, you will be even liked after you stop playing cricket," he said.
He now holds the record for most Test runs (12,773), Test centuries (42), ODI runs (17,178) and ODI centuries (45).
The countdown to Tendulkar's latest landmark has been dominating airtime in cricket-crazy India with TV channels and newspapers running specials to commemorate his achievement. (ANI)