In 1981, John McEnroe became Wimbledon champion, ending Bjorn Borg’s five-year reign. Some seven thousand kilometres away in the Mumbai suburb of Bandra, an eight-year-old thus found his hero. Sachin Tendulkar (already an aggressive brat with a penchant for beating up older boys) decided he was going to be McEnroe.
He moved around with a racquet in hand. The curly hair was already in place, and the headband screamed out his obsession. Wristbands completed the picture. The nickname followed. Tendulkar was ‘Mac’.