Tendulkar uncomfortable with fans touching feet

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/t/tendulkar_ap.jpg' class='caption'> He doesn't receive letters written in blood any more, but Sachin Tendulkar says that he does not feel comfortable when a fan touches his feet.

Updated: November 08, 2009 16:42 IST
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New Delhi:

He doesn't receive letters written in blood any more, but Sachin Tendulkar says that he does not feel comfortable when a fan touches his feet and tells him he is God.

Tendulkar, whose achievements with the bat have won him fans worldwide, says the adulation never ceases to surprise him.

"I used to receive letters written in blood...but not any more. It feels strange when a fan comes and touches your feet and says you are God. I don't feel comfortable with it, but it is the way they feel about you... that happened again just a couple of weeks ago actually," he says.

In a light-hearted interview published in celebrity magazine 'OK!', Tendulkar spoke about his love for Ferrari cars, his post-retirement plans and how he handles criticism.

Tendulkar said retirement thoughts were far away from his mind at the moment but he may start a business when he stops playing competitive cricket.

"That's a big question. I don't know...I will definitely be involved with the game. When I retire, that is when the doors to other opportunities will open. As of now, other than just promoting various products, I haven't opened the door to anything else. Maybe I'll start a business," he said.

"I don't know when that would be yet, but that will be the time I will focus my energy in different directions. Right now it's only focussed in one direction -- that is cricket," Tendulkar said.

Asked when was the last time he received some constructive criticism, the batting maestro said, "criticism is hardly ever constructive. I try and stay away from newspapers when I am playing. You get to read so many things that are not constructive, but somehow the guy who is writing it all seems to think that it's constructive."

Tendulkar said his celebrity status has helped him wriggle out of situations that would be difficult to handle for a commoner.

"There's one time that I remember clearly...we were in Australia playing some exhibition games -- it was around 1994. I was out with two other players and when we got back to the hotel, the rest of the team had already left for the airport. They had packed my bags and gone and there were no mobiles or anything. We had no way of reaching them," he recalled.

"We were to fly from Sydney to Melbourne -- we had no tickets, no passports, nothing. I got to the counter at the airport and explained the situation. The guy at the counter recognised me and he gave us three boarding passes from Sydney to Melbourne...without passports, without tickets. I felt that I was truly special," he said.

Asked when was the last time he spent an entire day without watching any sport, the 35-year-old batsman replied, "On December 31 last year. I spent time with my family in Mussoorie about 7,000 feet above sea level looking at the snow-capped mountains. It was freezing and we went for a long walk. I was a fantastic feeling. That was the day when I didn't watch sports at all."

On the one moment he felt proud of, Tendulkar said, "I was truly proud of our performance during the Chennai Test. We won against England on the last day."

Asked about the most recent prank he had played on a teammate, Tendulkar said, "I am always doing that...a while ago, we had gone to a restaurant and we actually fooled Yuvraj Singh. We put wasabi on a toast and told him it was a delicious spread that he must try. He almost ate it. We stopped him at the last minute.

When was the last time he did something which he wished he hadn't?

"Probably the last innings I batted in Mohali. I felt that I shouldn't have played that shot. I got out on it. (Smiles) That's what I feel every time I get out," he quipped.

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