Chennai: After guiding India to victory with a four that also fetched him his 41st Test hundred, Sachin Tendulkar on Monday rated his knock in the first Test against England among his "very, very special" centuries.
"If the team wins the 100 become very, very special, so this is right among my special centuries," said Tendulkar, who scored an unbeaten 103 to guide India to a six-wicket victory at the MA Chidambaram Stadium.
The Mumbai batsman hoped his feat would give some happiness to the people after the recent terror attacks in his city.
"What happened in Mumbai was extremely unfortunate. Cricket cannot lessen whatever happened... I hope this 100 will give some amount of happiness to the people," he said.
"I thank those who stood up to the terrorists and who made sure that they were captured or shot dead as the terrorists were many.
"I salute the NSG commandos, the Taj hotel staff, police, public and everyone," he said, paying rich tributes to the victims of recent terror attacks in Mumbai and to those who saved the lives of others.
Tendulkar said it was a very difficult track to bat on and that made the win all the more significant.
"The gameplan was to get opportunity for scoring more and more runs because the wicket was such and we could not be bogged down by that.
"This become a very, very special victory on a track where the ball was jumping awfully," he said.
A teamman to the core, Tendulkar also did not forget to acknowledge his teammates' contribution as he said "the atmosphere in the dressing room was really very cheerful and that helped a lot too".
He also praised Yuvraj Singh, who partnered him in a 163-run stand, saying "He played like a champion."
Yuvraj said it was his dream come true to bat alongside the master batsman.
"It was a dream come true by playing alongside him. As a kid I would always dream to play with him in Tests and it happened today," said Yuvraj, who made a comeback to the Test team after almost eight months.
Asked what his strategy was in the middle, Yuvraj said he just concentrated on playing his natural game.
"I was told to play my natural game and I did just that. I played my natural game," said the Punjab batsman, who is trying hard to cement his place in the longer version of the game.