He is a self-confessed Roger Federer fan. Legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar would however be rooting for his hero's arch-rival Rafael Nadal when the Indian Tennis Premier League begins November 28. The ITPL is a brainchild of Davis Cupper and Grand Slam champion Mahesh Bhupathi.
The former cricketer will jointly own the Mumbai franchise - in partnership with PVP Group - and the team will feature World No. 1 Rafael Nadal during the tournament which will be held till December 20. With Tendulkar as a co-owner and Nadal as a marquee player in the side, the team has already positioned itself as one to watch out for.
Tendulkar has always been an ardent tennis lover and has been seen cheering Federer at Wimbledon on several occasions. This time though, his loudest cheer is expected to be reserved for Nadal, who will reportedly pocket close to a million US dollars every night he takes to the court. Fans, though, would be watching out for Nadal on the court as much as they would be fighting for a glimpse of Tendulkar in the seating area.
Such is the buzz around Tendulkar co-owning a team in the ITPL that many reckon he will be the highlight in a tournament that also features giants of international tennis, including Wimbledon champion Andy Murray, two-time Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka and former world No.1 Caroline Wozniacki, among others.
Tendulkar though is not just looking at tennis but has also extended his love for sports to football. The cricketer who played his final match for India on November 16 has since been actively seen supporting other sports and bagged the rights to jointly own the Kochi franchise (with PVP Group again) in Indian Super League football tournament.
"I will always remain a sportsman at heart who is keen to positively impact the sporting fabric of the nation," he had said on Sunday (April 13).
Story first published on: Monday, 14 April 2014 19:30 IST