‘Maybe he wants to put him off’: Steve Waugh on Sachin Tendulkar’s huge compliment for Marnus Labuschagne

Former Australia captain Steve Waugh doesn’t agree with Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar’s views regarding batsman Marnus Labuschagne, who took the world by storm with his excellent performances last year. Tendulkar had picked Labuschagne as the player who most reminds him of himself, calling the fast-rising batsman a special talent with impeccable footwork. Waugh didn’t agree with the comparison but praised Labuschangne for his meteoric rise.

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“Maybe he (Tendulkar) wants to put him (Labuschagne) off. I don’t think so,” Waugh was quoted as saying by PTI. “In my opinion, he has appetite for runs. When he came to the side 12 months ago, he was 26th but now he is fourth ranked Test player batsmen in the world, so it’s incredible transformation.”

Speaking during a charity fund-raiser for the devastating bushfires in Australia, Tendulkar was asked to name the player who he thinks comes closest to resembling him at his prime.

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“I happened to be watching the second Test match at Lord’s between England and Australia. When Steve Smith got injured, I saw Labuschagne’s second innings,” Tendulkar responded.

“I was sitting with my father-in-law. I saw Marnus get hit off the second ball from Jofra Archer and, post that, the 15 minutes he batted, I said, ‘This player looks special’,” he recalled.

“There is something about him. His footwork was precise. Footwork is not physical, it’s mental. If you’re not thinking positively in your mind, then your feet don’t move,” he added.

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Labuschangne took note of this high praise from Tendulkar and he told cricket.com.au: “It was pretty amazing, it’s one that definitely when I saw it I was quick to read it and it really hit me. Amazing words from someone of that calibre. I was very grateful for his words and just stoked really.”

((With agency inputs))

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