Sachin Tendulkar gets Order of Australia

Last Updated: Tue, Nov 06, 2012 20:51 hrs

Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar added one more feather to his glorious crown when he was conferred membership to the Order of Australia here on Tuesday.

The country´s minister for regional Australia Simon Crean presented the Order of Australia to Tendulkar.

Thanking Australians, Tendulkar said: "They are fierce competitors and play well and hard. But they also shower you with praises when you come out and play well."

"Away from India, my favourite ground is Sydney," Tendulkar said.

"The most memorable trip of Australia was when I was invited by Sir Don Bradman on his 90th birthday," he said.

"Whenever I went to bat there, everybody gave me a standing ovation," he said.

Pertinently, Tendulkar became the second Indian to receive the honour after former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard, during her October visit to India, announced that the Order of Australia would be conferred on the star batsman.

Gillard had said Sachin was as admired in Australia as in India.

The decision had triggered a considerable amount of criticism as former Australian cricketer Matthew Hayden said such honours should be reserved for Australians and Tendulkar should not get it.

However, former Australian wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist came out in support of the Indian cricketer and said he has helped strengthen bonds between the two countries.

"The discussion around his award and the variety of opinion shows the amazing profile that Tendulkar has. Credit to Sachin to have the place he has held in both the countries. He has forged 22-years of relation between the two countries," Gilchrist said.

India has awarded the Bharat Ratna, the country´s highest civilian award, to former South Africa president Nelson Mandela.

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