Do we really need Sachin’s blood?

Sachin Tendulkar

No need for him to be another baba

Note: A day after this article was published on Sify, Sachin on Saturday (July 24) clarified that there won’t be any blood in the book. Read on to find out why it would have been an unnecessarily undignified act by the little champion, if he had allowed the publishers to go ahead with their original plan.

Almost 21 years ago, it was Waqar Younis who made the then 17-year-old Sachin Tendulkar spill blood in his debut Test with an awkward bouncer.

Now, it is the turn of a publisher.

For those of you who haven’t heard the news already, Kraken Media, the publishers of Tendulkar Opus, plan to print 10 deluxe copies of their 37kg tome with a signature page that “will be mixed with Sachin’s blood – mixed into the paper pulp so it’s a red resin”.

The editions, which have already been pre-ordered, are priced at $75000 each (Rs 35 lakhs at the current rate) and will also feature a DNA profile of the little champion generated from his saliva and more than 1,500 pictures, with each of the 852 pages being edged in gold leaf.

Kraken Media’s chief executive Karl Fowler explained the decision to the UK-based Guardian in this manner: “It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, it’s not to everyone’s taste and some may think it’s a bit weird. But the key thing here is that Sachin Tendulkar to millions of people is a religious icon. And we thought how, in a publishing form, can you get as close to your god as possible?”

Certainly, they have hit upon quite an idea indeed!

Even Deigo Maradona, the other sporting star whose autobiography was touted as an Opus, hasn’t been subjected to this kind of hagiography.

Agreed the cause is good. The Rs 3.5 crores raised from the deluxe-edition sale will go towards building a school in Mumbai.

Agreed also that the market for sports books in India, where Sachin has his biggest fan following, is rather thin.

I am reminded in this context of a friend of mine who ended up spending lakhs of rupees from his own pocket to get his biography on Prakash Padukone, the greatest badminton player India has produced, published. Passion, in his case, only served to burn a gaping hole in his purse.

And of a senior colleague, who was offered a paltry Rs 10000 to do a ‘quickie’ on one of our current batting greats by a publishing major because anything more elaborate and costlier wouldn’t be worth the trouble.

With the sports publishing scene in India being this bleak, Sachin and Kraken Media might have felt (and justifiably so) that it made sense to target just an exclusive clientele instead of reaching out to the hoi polloi.

Finding 10 people capable of forking out Rs 3.5 crore was definitely an easier task for them than launching a search for a million readers willing to part with Rs 350 and buy the book.

Be that as it may, why at all let Sachin’s blood seep into its pages?

Funnily, the batting great was reported to have said that he wanted us to see it just as a “mind-blowing” tribute.

But don’t you feel that while it might behove the leaders of a cult, Sachin has little need to lend his name and his blood to something this shamanistic?

Even his bosom pal Vinod Kambli was shocked enough into admitting that “This is something you could have expected from a Vinod Kambli and not Sachin Tendulkar.”

For once, he  is right.

This is an unnecessarily undignified act for Sachin, whose career has been built on the bedrock of dignity.

With February 2011 being the launch date of the book, the little champion will be well advised to have a relook at this decision of his.

Just to drive home the point once again, Sachin…

Spilling blood on the field is one matter; spilling it in a book for a publisher who considers you a “religion icon” on the strength of your skill with the willow is quite another.

Don’t you all agree too?

R Rajesh Kumar

16 responses to “Do we really need Sachin’s blood?

  1. It is his blood man. Let him spill it the way he wants.
    Atleast here, by the way, the spilling is for a good cause.
    And where is the cause of a religious cult being created. It is just 10 people dishing out 30 Lacs each and 10 numbers definitely do not make a cult.
    Kambli could be jealous since he did not get this chance.
    Just forget it and let the master blaster do as he pleases. It is his birth right. Blood or no Blood.

  2. Absolutely agree with the previous comment.It’s his blood and for the persons paying high amount to serve children atleast a return thank in this form is quite sensitive and acceptable too.So i pray GOD for the PRESS BY ANY MEDIUM should not spoil this social cause for their ILL-GHOSTY ACT aiming their publicity and turnover. TO BE HONEST AN INDIAN RESPECTED BY THE WHOLE UNIVERSE AS A GOD OF CRICKET is a gift for us.I once again request all of us,you not to spoil the LEGEND’S name and dignity

    and for the author of this tab,it is not indignified to do so since it is sensitive rather than your think of businessing in the name of commenting

  3. Well, school in Mumbai with that kind of money is simply great. Just leave him alone and attend to your work. Its become a habit for writers to sensationalize something about Tendulkar to increase their page ratings. Whew!!

  4. 3 crores rupees.

    It is not enough for a school in mumbai.

  5. “Even Deigo Maradona, the other sporting star whose autobiography was touted as an Opus, hasn’t been subjected to this kind of hagiography.”

    So if Maradona had been “subjected” to this act, you wouldn’t have raised so much voice, eh?

  6. Its not that the publisher has stabbed Sachin and collected his blood in a goblet and spilling it over the book. They will collect few ml of blood with a syringe and mix those drops with the paper pulp. We are not generating Sachin’s blood. His own bone marrow is generating it.Let him do whatever he wants to do with his own blood. Stop creating unnecessary fuss. Its good that this man is trying to do some good in this world. I am sorry that I can’t buy that book but congratulate those who can buy the book for that book will be a huge family property for them for generations.

  7. Disgusting. How could you do it Sachin?

  8. I am sure Sachin will not agree to this ridiculous idea he does not need these gimmicks we dont need his biography in blood may he play as long as possible.

  9. The idea surely doesnot go in line with the Master’s ideology and stature. For sake of getting attention , people can plan any thing, but senses should prevail and like a hype movey is floored down by audiences the same way we should disapprove such gimmicks by not showing interest in such acts.

  10. so, this is a non-vegetarian book?

  11. C.R. Marutha Ravindran

    It is worth doing like this because he is the batting great. I am unhappy since I couldn’t purchase his book. He should score more than 400 runs in test cricket and make all the indian fans happy. Good luck to do that one.

    God bless India and Master batsman Sachin Tendulkar.

  12. There’s no need 4 Sachin 2 do that. The book is, anyway, going 2 get very good opening sales. No need 4 Sachin 2 do something which may ‘perhaps’ stain his integrity.

  13. Well in general, indian people have this habbit of talking about idealism and we should do this or we should that. I mean what is the BIG deal ? And if anything, its good. In the next 200-300 years, generations will talk about Sachin and to have a book where his blood has been used besides his DNA, I mean common; it will be treasure and I will tell you that this is an investment, and I guess somebody who buys this book in 3.5 crore will be able to sell in 20 crore or so.
    So stop being a jerk and raising your fingure on sachin and get along with your life; and mind you, this is his life and decision, and may i ask you Mr Rajesh, WHO THE HELL YOU ARE ANYWAY?

  14. It is not that Sachin does dignified things. Let`s define that whatever he does should be considered as dignified. I don`t see anyone in the present world, qualified to comment (-ve ly) on him.

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