Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh play at Sathya Sai Grama
Bangalore, 19 January 2024: Sachin and Yuvraj inaugurated the new cricket stadium – Sai Krishnan Stadium at Sathya Sai Grama – a global hub and an epicentre of service and spiritual activities conducted by Sri Madhusudan Sai across 33 countries.
National and International cricketers from seven nations – India, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, England, South Africa, Australia and Bangladesh came together in the spirit of ‘One World One Family’ and played in the spirit of brotherhood to demonstrate to the world the cause of a common humanity which is bound by interconnectedness and harmony.
In the exciting match that ensued, Sachin led team, ‘One World’ won the T20 format led OWOF Cup. The friendly match featured a stellar lineup of legendary cricketers, including Naman Ojha, Upul Tharanga, Alviro Peterson, S Badrinath, Ashok Dinda, Ajanta Mendis, Harbhajan Singh, Monty Panesar, RP Singh, Danny Morrison, Parthiv Patel, Md Kaif, Darren Maddy, Alok Kapali, Romesh Kaluwitharana, Jason Krejza, Muthiah Muralidaran, Mkhaya Ntini, Chaminda Vaas, Venkatesh Prasad, and the dynamic brothers – Irfan Pathan and Yusuf Pathan.
Over 150 dignitaries graced the match on stage and about 3,500 audience cheered for the match, most of whom also included students who receive free education at the schools established by the Sri Madhusudan Sai Global Humanitarian Mission.
Two key initiatives to empower the grassroots sports talent in India was launched. ‘Sports for All’ initiative led by Sachin Tendulkar and the ‘Sunil Gavaskar Cricket Academy.’ Few children were presented with their sports kits by Sachin Tendulkar and Sri Madhusudan Sai, as a mark of encouraging them to pursue sports.
Bharat Ratna Awardee Sachin Tendulkar expressed: “It’s a huge honour to be here and take part in this special occasion. As a child, I was a very naughty. My parents were extremely patient with me and at the same time, concerned about my likes and dislikes. They encouraged me in sports. When my energy was channelised to doing what I like to do, I dreamt and realised my dream to play cricket for India. Sports taught me to get back focus and purpose. The Sri Madhusudan Sai Global Humanitarian Mission is also working towards nurturing the sports talents of students. Today, when I stand here next to Sadguru
Sri Madhusudan Sai, I really applaud his vision and contribution to the world. I had the privilege to visit the mission’s hospital in Palwal and Navi Mumbai. Both the hospitals were brilliant, but there was one thing missing there – a billing counter. I have never visited a hospital which doesn’t have one. All the treatments there are free of cost. Thank you on behalf of the cricketing fraternity who is gathered here to contribute in whatever possible way we can. I’m truly honored to be here.”
Padma Bhushan Awardee, Dr Sunil Gavaskar said in a statement: “Sports has the power to inspire and unite. Initiatives like these, beyond the boundaries of cricket, reflect the true spirit of humanity. Congratulations to everyone who came forward readily to promote the cause of social responsibility and philanthropy through this beautiful game of cricket. I express my gratitude to these legendary cricketers who have come together on this platform to advocate for the cause of One World One Family.”
Sri Madhusudan Sai, Founder, Sri Madhusudan Sai Global Humanitarian Mission, expressed, “‘One World One Family Cup,’ is aimed at creating awareness about embracing all as our own. This friendly match will be an annual affair to embody the spirit of a sportive sportsmanship, fraternity and cooperation. The future plan is to build a multi-faceted coaching center that will include a badminton academy, world class swimming pool, archery academy, etc. for the lesser privileged. I see sports as an inclusive platform where individuals with varied interests and backgrounds can participate. The aim is to nurture young talent and provide equal opportunity to every child who is interested in sports.”
Amidst cheers of One World One Family alike, the friendship match indeed served its purpose of promoting the feeling of unity and collective joy.
The Sai Krishnan Cricket Stadium at Sathya Sai Grama is poised to become a beacon of excellence, not just in the realm of cricket but also as a symbol of harmony and collaboration. It will be open to everyone and looks forward to hosting regional matches as well.
The gracious presence of some iconic members from the legendary 1983 Cricket World Cup team added to the excitement of the event. They not only witnessed the friendly match but also expressed their solidarity for the noble cause of ‘One World One Family.