Tendulkar comes visiting

Sachin Tendulkar seated in the Royal Box may be a familiar sight during the Wimbledon fortnight. Famously a tennis fan, the champion cricketer was spotted at the Olympic tennis centre here, where he sat through nearly three hours watching Sania Mirza and Prarthana Thombare in the opening round of the women’s doubles on Saturday evening.

Sachin Tendulkar spent time with the Indian athletes at the Olympic Village before heading over to the Tennis Centre to watch Sania Mirza and Prarthana Thombare in the women's doubles.

Tendulkar, with his left leg in a brace after a recent surgery, turned down an offer of a courtside seat to avoid the distraction his presence may cause to the athletes on court. Seated in an unobtrusive corner of Court No.9, he even chatted with most fans who queued up to exchange pleasantries with him.

For company, Tendulkar had Leander Paes for most of the duration of the match. .

Tendulkar had visited the Olympic Village earlier in the day. He had photo sessions with the Indian athletes and interacted with some of them. “I bring to you the wishes of more than a billion people from India,” Tendulkar said, addressing the athletes. “I know that you are among the best in your sport and have worked so hard to reach this level.” “The entire nation is behind you, and we all want you to do well.”

Recalling the thrill of representing the country at the Kuala Lumpur CWG in 1998, Tendulkar said: “It was a great experience. That is why I wanted to come and visit this place.”