`Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar on Tuesday paid a surprise visit to the World Cup-bound Indian hockey team and gave the players a pep talk ahead of the side's departure for the quadrennial event to be held at The Hague, Netherlands from May 31 to June 15.
Tendulkar arrived at the Capital, specially on the request of Indian hockey team captain Sardar Singh and spent nearly two hours with the entire squad during which he shared his life-time experience with the players.
"Sachin paaji (brother) came today to meet us. I requested him a few days back to come down to Delhi and meet us and share share his experiences with the players. He obliged my request and gave a surprise visit to the team," Sardar told PTI.
"I knew about his visit 10 days back and only told the chief coach (Terry Walsh) and High Performance Director (Roelant Oltmans). But we preferred to keep it a secret to give the team members a surprise," he said about Tendulkar's meeting with the hockey team at the Ashoka Hotel.
"He made my day," Sardar added.
Sardar said during his visit Tendulkar shared his on and off field experiences with the hockey players which will be a great motivating factor for the team during the World Cup.
"Sachin paaji shared his experiences with the players and wished the team good luck. He told the players about how to approach and prepare for a match," he said.
"He emphasised on the fact that just like cricket hockey is a team game. He is the world's best cricketer and his visit will instill confidence and self belief in the players," Sardar said.