Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has termed Sachin Tendulkar's retirement from international cricket as the "biggest" the game has ever seen, while another former Test great VVS Laxman feels that the farewell arrangements will not be a distraction to the Master Blaster.
"Any retirement is greeted with sadness," said Gavaskar to NDTV. After November 18, there will be no Tendulkar in action. So the frenzy is understandable. He is the biggest cricketer after Sir Don Bradman and his retirement is the biggest of them all."
Meanhwile, former teammate VVS Laxman said Tendulkar's match-winning innings against Haryana in the Ranji Trophy opener at Lahli would act as a confidence booster for the legendary batsman as it came under tough conditions.
"He played a match-winning knock in the second innings but I was more impressed with the amount of time he spent out there in the middle," said Laxman.
Both Gavaskar and Laxman said that Tendulkar would not be affected by on-going celebrations in Kolkata, which many assume to be a cause for distraction.
"I don't think, these things matter. The moment he landed, he made it clear that he would like to concentrate on cricket. As far as the arrangements goes, Kolkata has always shown love for its cricketers. Sometimes, it can be overwhelming but you don't get this kind of love anywhere else in the country," Gavaskar added.
"Eden Gardens is a special ground. In Kolkata, right from the time you land at the airport till you board a flight back, the love and affection you get is unimaginable. People come up to you and speak about the game," said Laxman.