- The artwork was unveiled to much fanfare earlier this week
- The statue represents one of the best batsmen in recent history
- Supporters weren’t sure who was pictured
A new statue of one of cricket’s greatest batters is leaving fans of the sport scratching their heads as they wonder whether it is Indian star Sachin Tendulkar or current Australian star Steve Smith.
The striking resemblance between the two men and the sculpture even led some supporters to joke that it was a mix of the pair or that the artist had simply been instructed to create a depiction of the “best cricketer since Bradman” and one I made a bet on both sides.
No wonder cricket fans are confused whether the new statue (pictured) is dedicated to Sachin Tendulkar or Steve Smith
At a loss?
The answer is Sachin Tendulkar.
The statue of the ‘Little Master’ was unveiled at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Wednesday, just a day before India’s World Cup match against Sri Lanka.
Tendulkar was present when his likeness was displayed at the ground where he played his final Test match.
His statue – created by Pramod Kamble and standing between the Sachin Tendulkar Stand and the Vijay Trade Pavilion – shows him throwing a mighty punch straight to the ground, and the 50-year-old also received a replica of the artwork, that he could place on his mantel.
The answer is Tendulkar, also known as the Little Master, who was immortalized at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai – a place very close to his heart
Some cricket fans joked that the sculptor depicted Smith (pictured at the World Cup last month) after being instructed to base the work on “the best player since Bradman”.
Tendulkar (pictured receiving a replica of the statue at the unveiling) wrote: “This statue is not just mine” – and many confused sports fans agreed with him
The ground is close to his heart, having lifted the World Cup trophy there in 2011 and also represented Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League.
“From being a 10-year-old boy smuggled into the North Stand with just 24 tickets for 25 eager fans to unveiling my statue at the legendary Wankhede, life has truly come full circle,” Tendulkar tweeted after the reveal.
“This statue is not just mine. It is a dedication to every non-striker, my cricketing heroes, every teammate, every colleague who stood by me because without them this journey would not have been possible.”
Many fans agreed with his statement that the piece “isn’t just mine” and took to social media to express their confusion over who the artwork depicts.
“They probably should have given the sculptor more instructions than just ‘make a statue of the best since Bradman,'” someone wrote on X.
A fan shared his hilarious opinion on Tendulkar’s reaction when he discovered that the statue looks remarkably like the former Australian Test captain
Another die-hard cricketer had his own theory about why the artwork looks like both stars
“Why does Sachin Tendulkar’s statue look like Steven Smith?” another fan added.
“Strange decision to put a statue of Steve Smith in Mumbai’s Wankhede,” joked a third.
India have already secured a place in the World Cup semi-finals after beating Sri Lanka by 302 runs after bowling for just 55 runs on Thursday.
Steve Smith and Australia can all but secure another place in the semi-finals if they beat a struggling England team at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Saturday evening Australian time.
Their preparation has been complicated by the loss of stars Glenn Maxwell – who suffered a concussion in a horrific accident on a golf course – and Mitchell Marsh, who flew to Australia on Thursday to attend to a family matter.