When Younis and Akhtar, who redefined aggression, praise a batsman who went after them in the field, the player does not need any other certificate. Especially, considering the intense rivaly.
Akhtar said “I never said he was afraid of fast bowling, but I thought he was a bit casual when he came out to bat after I had bowled Rahul Dravid. The ball was swinging and I wanted to bowl a swinging yorker. When he was out, I was stunned by the reaction of the crowd. I had no idea when I came to India that Sachin is so big this country,” he recalled.
Remembering the famous cut over point that went for six during the 2003 World Cup where Tendulkar scored a 75-ball 98 at Centurion, Akhtar said it was difficult to bowl to him.
“I struggled with the line. He thrashed me, the faster I bowled the harder he hit me. He hit me for a six over point. He batted amazingly and from the first ball looked very focused,” he said.