Sachin Tendulkar was lifted onto Virat Kohli’s shoulders after India won the 2011 World Cup. It was a dream come true for Kohli, a young Indian who was playing in his first World Cup as a representative of India, to win this prestigious tournament in his sixth and final attempt. Kohli said at the Wankhede Stadium exactly what the entire nation was thinking: “He has carried the load of the nation for 23 years. Now it is time for us to do the same.”
Nine years have passed since Tendulkar retired, and Kohli has succeeded him as the quintessential star of Indian cricket. Tendulkar and Kohli may never agree on who is the better batsman, but there is no doubt that both legends have immense respect for one another. In 2013, after Tendulkar’s farewell test in Mumbai, Kohli and Sachin shared one of their most heart-warming exchanges. During the same show two years ago, Kohli had discussed the special moment. At that moment, Kohli described the thread as being the most important belonging he owned, and in a gesture of his respect for and admiration for Tendulkar, he presented it to him.
Threads are often worn around the wrist. Many people in India wear them. I received one from my father. This was always in my bag. Then I said, “I cannot give you anything more valuable than this.” It was like my father had given it to me and I couldn’t give it to you. You have inspired me greatly and you are very important to us all. I just want to let you know that. He wanted to give you a small gift,” Kohli expressed.