Port-of-Spain: There has been brisk sales of Sachin Tendulkar’s book, “The Presence of Tendulkar” in Trinidad following the announcement that he will be coming to play cricket at the much-touted Brian Lara Stadium opening ony May 13.

And controversy also broke out over the announcement that a suite in the stadium would be named after him, with some opposing the idea, even as many applauded the decision.

This was notwithstanding the later announcement that the world’s cricketing icon would not be coming, much to the dismay and disappointment of the cricket lovers in this twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago.

Minister of Sport and Youth Affairs Darryl Smith said that because of “scheduling conflicts” Tendulkar would not be able to make it.

“There were few windows, very, very small windows that we were talking about to get him here but that window was closed because of scheduling conflicts and the show must go on. He may come at some other time, as I said, later on in the year, but at this particular point we don’t want to push back or change the opening date to suit that, so we have to move forward,” Smith said.

“And of, course, Sachin, as he would tell you any day, has been a person who has pulled Lara, throughout his career. In fact, he has mentioned to me several times, Sachin is the reason why there is Brian Lara because they were head-on-head to be the best player in the world. He was pulling Brian, Brain pulling him for many, many years,” he said.

Clifford Narinesingh, biographer of both Lara, Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar, said in an interview, that it is an insular view that a player of Tendulkar's status cannot be given prominence in a large public park or stadium. “A more global view which transcends the parochial will warmly entertain such a gesture as this can be positive. It can open vistas and make sport more embracing, beyond the limited vision reveal by so many”.

Narinsingh said it was pertinent to note that the Cricket Club of India, Mumbai has honoured the late Sir Frank Worell with a luxury suite -The Sir Frank Worrell Suite. The same cricket club of India honoured Vivian Richards and Michael Holding as honorary members and done so gloriously.

(Paras Ramoutar can be contacted at paras_ramoutar@yahoo.com)

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