When we asked readers if Sachin's record will be eclipsed in our feature on top Test century-makers, we received many, many responses. Beginning today, we will post the responses.
First responses: Here comes Ricky!
Yes, Sachin's recent achievement of 35 Test hundreds will be eclipsed soon by Ricky Ponting.
Maybe Ricky Ponting can eclipse Sachin's record. But if Sachin scores some hundreds then Ponting won't be able to break his record. None of the other current players can eclipse Sachin's record.
We would need another Sachin Tendulkar or Ricky Ponting in current form to break that record.
Who else but Ricky Pointing? The way he is going I don't think anyone will be able to stop him.
Though it may appear as if Ponting or Hayden may overtake Sachin by looking at this statistics, I don't think so.
First you have given a 5 year statistics in which Sachin has scored 11 and Ponting 21 centuries. So, statistically, if both play for another 5 years, Sachin will end with 46 and Ponting with 49 centuries.
But you have to keep in mind that Ponting and Hayden are in the 'purple patch' of their career and they cannot sustain the momentum for long.
Of course, Sachin's record will be broken, but it will by Jayawardane!!!
Tendulkar is no longer the batsman he was in his twenties. Nowadays he has to struggle for every run and his strike rate is far below the current average of leading batsmen in Tests like Ponting. Anything below 70 per 100 balls faced is a poor strike rate in modern days.
Tendulkar makes the same mistake like hanging his bat to balls pitched outside the off stump. His soft dismissals are increasing. He seems to have lost the gust for runs or records.
In the Indian context he can fail in 5 innings but make a good score in the sixth one to retain his place. I do not expect him to get more than three more centuries for the rest of his playing years. He may not be even able to overhaul Steve Waugh's record for most number of runs in a career.
Ponting plays a far better game than Tendulkar. He is also unusually lucky in that umpires gives him lives in many innings besides the fielders. An analysis of his 100s will reveal this. In the days of local umpires, all Australians in Australia enjoyed several lives and were legless wonders. The number of lbws against them were far less than what visiting batsmen got.
Once Tendulkar was given out when a ball struck his shoulder -- bbw - body before wicket for visiting batsmen. Even with neutral umpires the record is not that good. Most of the umpiring errors go in favour of the Australians in batting and fielding.
But all these factors cannot conceal the fact that Ponting is really a great batsman and punishes the opposition for even a single dropped chance or umpiring favours. He is going to play South Africa and Bangladesh in 2006 besides England coming summer. He will easily score another 3 centuries and by 2007 would surpass 35 centuries.
Hayden is another blaster who has a more impressive record of centuries compared to the number of matches played. If he goes at this rate he could average a century once in every two Tests. He has enormous patience and could play long innings and graft centuries if need be as he showed in the last Test against England last summer.
Tendulkar would soon be eclipsed by the two Australians in terms of runs and centuries and he will just sink into oblivion.
--D P Rangan
All of them will slow down like Sachin. No one at present can break Sachin's record.
--V B Garg
Sachin's record is undoubtedly going to be a thing of the past. The age factor is on Ponting's side and Tendulkar no longer seems to be the Tendulkar we know. Going by the stats, Hayden and Ponting have achieved amazing records that Tendulkar cannot even think of matching. If you play for so long you are definitely going to make records if you are a good player.
Sachin is a good player but Lara and Ponting are great players.
I don't think anybody would be able to surpass Tendulkar. If in the last 5 years he has scored just 11 centuries, in the last 9 years preceeding that he has scored 24 centuries. Most of the time he was suffering from injuries in the said 5 year period.
I imagine it would be by Ponting, Hayden being the other choice. Even with a slight (but noticeable decline) in his statistics, Sachin still scores a hundred every four Tests and has an average above 55.
I believe the real issue is that the Australian Cricket Board schedules far more Tests than the Indian Board, which is only promoting One Day Cricket with the aim of making money in the guise of 'entertaining audiences.' If we schedule more Tests the record will be Sachin's. He also needs to have just one good year (sooner than later, hopefully).
Ponting is an all time great and cannot be compared with anybody else in present day cricket.
It's quite likely that Sachin's world record of 35 test hundreds is eclipsed soon. This feat can be achieved by Brian Lara, Ricky Ponting or Matthew Hayden. Ponting and Hayden are in good form, especially Ponting.
However,if Sachin also continues to score more hundreds,it may not be easy to break his record. He has the potential for that.
Sachin's record will be eclipsed soon and Ricky Ponting is the person.
No one can achieve Sachin's record of 100s in Test cricket till he is in the game. And if any one can do this, he is Brian Lara.
Sachin's record cannot be eclipsed by anyone in the near future. in the last five years Sachin was not at his usual best due to injuries as we all know. But from now, as he has the record of the most number of centuries behind him, he'll show his real class-starting from Pakistan (actually started!!!).
As far as Ricky and Matthew are concerned, other countries are fast catching up with the Aussies and are doing well against them. They will slow down in the years to come and may never catch up with Sachin!
The only potential threat I see is Rahul Tondulkar, who broke Sachin's record as a schoolboy.
All the best Sachin.
There is a strong possibilty of breaking Sachin's record of 35 Test centuries by Brian Lara.
-- Ravindra Haldipur
It surely will be. By end next year by Lara or Ponting.
--Ramananda Pai Arjuna
As they say all records are meant to be broken.And this record will fall too. If you look at the current lot of players and want to bet your bottom rupee it will have to be Ricky Ponting provided he stays fit, and in form. Also he would have to play a game of tag with Sachin as Sachin won't stop at 35 centuries.
To be realistic and Ponting to hold the record he should aim for at least 40 centuries. Then again, we have to take note of the Australian selectors here as they are more professional then our bunch in India. A couple of poor series and Ponting can find himself out of the team (a very extreme case here)
Lastly, there is the age factor which cannot be ignored. We do understand that all that swimming makes Australians physically fitter than their subcontinent counterparts but still we have to see how Ponting does when he is 33-34.
So if things go as they are now Ponting should be at the top of the lot unless I am proven wrong by Sachin and he scores 6 centuries in Pakistan (I would love that).
P S: Ponting is a good one-and-a-half year younger than Sachin.
Just see the number of matches Sachin played against Ponting or Hayden, and also Sachin's injury period in the past five years, and his comebacks -- you can make it out why it is impossible to beat him in this particular record.
-- Sarat Chandra Rachagolla
The three guys who stand a chance of eclipsing Sachin's record are:
1. Brian Lara
2. Ricky Ponting
and 3. Jacques Kallis.