RAJESH KUMAR - Cricket Statisticians
Sachin Tendulkar - Playing It My Way
Sachin Tendulkar - Playing It My Way - My Autobiography with Boria Majumdar

Published 2014 by Hodder & Stoughton Ltd.,
338 Euston Road, London NW1 3BH
An Hachette UK company

Hardback ISBN: 978 1 473 60520 6

Hachette India, Publicity Assistant: Shobhita Narayan

Pages: 486
Price: Rs.899.00 (in the sub-continent)

In his recently released autobiography, Sachin Tendulkar tells his own remarkable story - from his first Test cap at the age of 16 to his 100th international century, his 24-year career, controversies, personal life and the emotional final farewell that brought his country to a standstill.

In the Prologue, Sachin writes: "It seems to me that no autobiography can claim to document every detail of the author's life. That's impossible. There are bound to be issues that can't be written about for one reason or another, events that are too personal or perhaps too sensitive. Yet I have set out to make this account of my career as close to the full story as I can."

In the first chapter, namely, Childhood, Sachin believed humility and modesty were his parents' hallmarks and he owes a lot of his personality to his upbringing. Sachin says, he had a fascinating childhood. "My early years were never boring; in fact, quite the opposite. I can trace a lot of the stamina and inner strength that sustained me during my cricket career to those early year, which were full of fun."

Since music was a constant presence in the Tendulkar household, the same had become his second love. Besides cricket and music, he was also a big fan of tennis as a child - his favourite being John McEnroe.

Despite his international celebrity status, Sachin has always remained a very private person, devoted to his family and country. He has provided a frank and revealing account of his sporting life.

In a chapter, Learning The Game, Sachin mentions the transition from playing with a tennis ball to playing with a cricket ball under the watchful eyes of Ramakant Achrekar, then cricket coach at Shardashram Vidyamandir school.

"Looking back at these years of cricket, I must say I owe a lot to my coach Ramakant Achrekar - as well as his assistants. Das Shivalkar and Laxman Chavan. Had it not been for Sir, I would not be the cricketer I turned out to be. He was a strict disciplinarian and did everything he could for me."

Tendulkar believed Indian cricket benefited significantly when the BCCI decided to end Greg Chappell's tenure as coach in April 2007. "Several of our senior players were relieved to see him go, which was hardly surprising because, for reasons hard to comprehend, he had not treated them particularly fairly. His attitude to Sourav, for example, was astonishing. Chappell is on record as saying that he may have got the job because of Sourav but that did not mean he was going to do favours to Sourav for the rest of his life. Frankly, Sourav is one of the best cricketers India has produced and he did not need favours from Chappell to be part of the team."

Tendulkar has revealed his shock and humiliation at being accused of ball tampering on the 2001 tour to South Africa. "The incident occurred on the third day, when I bowled a four-over spell, taking the wicket of Herschelle Gibbs. I was bowling seam-up and was getting the ball to swing both ways. During this spell I used my thumb to clean off the grass that was stuck on the seam.

"Soon after the end of the day's play we were informed that the match referee had called six Indian players for a hearing and that I had been accused of ball tampering. I was shocked, because I had always played cricket with integrity and honesty and would never do such a thing."

With full support from the BCCI, it was decided by the Indian and South African Cricket Boards, rather than by the ICC, that Mike Denness should not officiate in the match and he was replaced by Denis Lindsay, the former South African wicketkeeper and the match went ahead to be labelled an unofficial Test match by the ICC.

The autobiography also reiterates the importance of hard work as talent alone does not guarantee hundred hundreds.

The legendary batsman's autobiography is selling like hotcakes in bookshelves and online shopping websites.

Benedict Bermange has done a commendable job, meticulously compiling Sachin Tendulkar's Test and ODI record.