The legendary former Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar’s iconic jersey number ’10’ may not be seen on the back of any Indian player in the future, with the BCCI suggesting that it may be unofficially retired.
There are no plans to formally retire the jersey, but the BCCI suggested that players may be unwilling to take the number 10 jersey in the future out of respect for Tendulkar, and the contributions he made to Indian cricket wearing that number. A BCCI official had earlier said, “It’s a very individual choice. If players don’t want to wear a certain number, one can’t force them. ICC might just tell you that a team can’t officially retire a jersey but it would never tell you that it’s mandatory to wear that number. The BCCI has not taken any such call (retiring the No.10 jersey). It’s a very informal thing among players. Also you don’t want young players to be abused like it happened with Shardul Thakur.”
The only player to wear the number after Tendulkar retired in 2013 was young Indian pacer Shardul Thakur on his debut, who was later trolled on social media for his choice of jersey number. He was forced to issue a clarification behind picking the number, saying that he had picked it for numerological reasons.
While it is not common for teams to retire jersey numbers in international cricket, it has happened in the past with football. Most famously, Italian club Napoli has retired Maradona’s number 10 jersey in honour of the legendary Argentinian’s stint with the club. Interestingly, Sachin’s IPL team Mumbai Indians had retired his jersey number after he announced his retirement.