"It will be extremely difficult for India to get a player of Sachin Tendulkar's calibre. The joy that he has given to people like us can't be described in words and people like me have learnt from him even if we had retired much before he came into the international scene," former Pakistan captain Abbas said in an interview.

Abbas, who scored more than 5000 runs in his 78 Tests, stated with conviction that although Test cricket was tougher in 1970's and early 80's compared to now, Tendulkar would have been equally successful in those eras also.
"I feel it's unfair to compare cricketers of two different eras. I and Sunil (Gavaskar) played at a time when you had Andy Roberts, Dennis Lillee, Jeff Thomson, Michael Holding and later Malcolm Marshall at their peak. It was an era which required different kind of mindset and courage. But a great player is a great player irrespective of the era in which he plays. I firmly believe that Tendulkar would have got as much success against Lillee, Roberts or Marshall as he got against Lee, McGrath or Shoaib Akhtar. All because of a proper technique and enormous courage to play fast bowling," the 66-year-old former Pakistan captain said.

Abbas was present at the National Stadium in Karachi in 1989, when Tendulkar made his debut and also remembers watching him play in all the other three Tests in that series.

"When I found a schoolboy getting hit by Waqar Younis and not even show that he is hurt, it was something that caught my attention. He had already become a man at 16. If you can face Waqar with confidence, who was the fastest at that time along with Wasim Akram, then you are certainly destined for greatness," Abbas said.


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