Even though they had a fiercely contested rivalry in those beautiful good old days, there was never ever a shortage of mutual respect. This is why, years later, Shane Warne wants no one but the might of the great Sachin Tendulkar to bat for his life.
In his book, "No Spin", the former Australian leg-spinner wrote that it is his tussle with the likes of Sachin and the Prince of Trinidad Brian Lara, which pushed him to work harder over his game and in a way, helped him become the greatest ever.
Speaking to NDTV, Warned said that while he would pick Lara if he needed a century on the last day of a Test match but would ultimately choose the Master Blaster to bat for his life.
He said, "Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara, easily, were the best batsmen of our generation, my time. If I want someone to score a hundred on the final day of the Test series, I would send Lara," he added, "But if I want someone to bat for my life day in, day out, I would send Tendulkar, he was a class act."
Warne looked back on his career and shared an experience from his debut against India at Sydney in 1992 and said, "I didn't know half my team. I had to introduce myself to the team. I remember playing the Test match, where Ravi Shastri played beautifully,” adding, "It was a great way to start my friendship with Sachin and Ravi and it was great to play against India."
Warne retired from the game in 2007 after having forged a legacy for himself with his 708 Test and over 1000 International wickets.
(Inputs from Cricket Next)