As an ardent fan and enthusiast of the Test Cricket, it was distressing for me to watch one of the world’s best players ending up making a wrong judgment. No doubt, it will take some time to get over this grief, but I just want to let you know that I am sorry too. Because it is fans like us, who put extra pressure on you guys to win, which resulted in a desperate move on your part to win.
Honesty is almost unheard of in international sports. But seeing you owning up to your one rare mistake, and risking your career; not to mention paying the price for the past sins of Australian cricket, you Sir have set new standards in the world of cricket, or rather in the world of sports.
It takes immense guts to accept that you have erred, and it takes enormous bravery to address the media and say “I was wrong and I am sorry.” Knowing how critical media is to every defeat, I know it will be hard to right this wrong, but I am writing this to let you know that the world is still at your feet.
It takes a strong character to accept a mistake, and even stronger to do it in public. We have always been taught, a leader is someone who leads by an example both on and off the field.
I know many fans like me who idolize you, must have been let down by your one rare misjudgment, but by owning up to the mistake, you made me a real fan of your character.
In countries like India and Australia, we hold our sporting heroes to a higher standard than everyone else. For me, it has always been cricketers, be it Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and recently you.
At the age of 28, you had every bowler around the world dancing to your tunes, some of my colleagues would even discuss, how to stop world’s number 1 Test batsman, you, from scoring big hundreds. Because it felt like every time you wore the Baggy Green and walked to the wicket, you were walking on water.
You still remain the only batsman in the current era to have 941 ranking points, an average second best only to Sir Don Bradman and 23 Test centuries. Your hundred in Adelaide Test 2014 will remain special.
Someone who has followed your cricket since your debut, and knowing cricket is your life, as you not only play it but you breathe it; I know the next few days, and weeks and months would be difficult.
Always remember, you have the capacity for greatness! Your path back is going to be long and rocky, and there will be a lot of dark times. But I wish you the quickest recovery ever.
Knowing you from a distance, I am sure you will come back stronger, Smithy!