Order Of Australia honour for Tendulkar
"Cricket is, of course, a great bond between Australia and India. We are both cricket-mad nations. I am very pleased that we are going to confer on Sachin Tendulkar the membership of the Order of Australia (AM)," Gillard, who arrived here on Monday on a three-day visit, said.
The Order of Australia is an order of chivalry to recognise Australian citizens and other persons for achievement or for meritorious service. The 39-year old cricketer, also a Rajya Sabha member, is the second Indian to be honoured with the AM, the first being eminent lawyer and former attorney general Soli Sorabjee. The owner of world cricket’s innumerable records, including century of international hundreds, the Little Master is currently playing in South Africa in the Champions League.
Gillard made the announcement while visiting a cricket clinic here. She disclosed that the legendary batsman will receive the honour from Simon Crean, Minister for the Arts and Minister for Regional Australia, when he visits India.
Tendulkar joins a special league of non-Australian cricketing legends who have been bestowed with the AM honour, the others being Sir Garfield Sobers, Brian Lara and Clive Lloyd, all from West Indies. Tendulkar has 15,533 runs in 190 Tests besides a mammoth 18,426 runs in 463 ODIs. He also has a record 100 international centuries to his credit.
I indeed feel privileged and honoured at receiving this recognition," Tendulkar reacted to the announcement made by the Australian PM. "I hope that this honour will further cement the bond between the two countries, we both share a unique love for cricket," he added.
"As an Indian cricketer, I have always enjoyed playing against and in Australia and feel it is one of the great cricketing rivalries. I have always received tremendous affection from the Australian cricket fans. Once again my heartfelt thanks to the Australian government for this recognition and for considering me worthy of this rare honour," Tendulkar said.