19 January, 2021

On A Golden Run

Sachin Tendulkar’s multi-million dollar contract with WorldTel marks the explosive entry of big money into the Indian sports scene

On A Golden Run

The year is 1989. Wunderkind Sachin Tendulkar breaks in on the Indian cricketing scene and a host of corporate number crunchers, making a beeline for the cricketing prodigy, are told to "back off". The miracle boy wished to concentrate on his cricket, and preferred to consult ‘Sir’ (former captain Sunil Gavaskar), before meandering into such snake pits.

Back to 1995. The boy is now man, he shaves, has a wife and has just hooked – man-to-man tough talk across the table – the biggest endorsement deal in the history of Indian cricket. So big is the deal that, in the words of Lokesh Sharma, India’s leading sports consultant, "Sachin would be earning thrice as much as all the cricketers combined in the history of Indian cricket."

The estimated US $7.5 million (Rs 27 crore) that Sachin is expected to earn from WorldTel, spread over five years, wouldn’t be quite enough for him to go in for a Lear jet to take him to St John’s Wood, London, next year for the Test series after the World Cup and pop peanuts along the way. But it...



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