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    Indian media hails Tendulkar's milestone

    Newspapers gave liberal column space to the star player, who is fondly called the \"God of cricket\".

    New Delhi: Sachin Tendulkar's 50th Test century was greeted with front-page newspaper headlines on Monday heralding the landmark by the master batsman.

    News channels and websites started celebrating Tendulkar's half-century of centuries on Sunday when the legendary batsman reached the three-figure mark — 107 not out — in the first Test against South Africa at Centurion.

    They continued to highlight the achievement on Monday and invited fans to send in their messages for Tendulkar.

    Newspapers gave liberal column space to the star player, who is fondly called the "God of cricket" here by media and fans alike, after he became the first man to complete 50 test centuries.

    "Don of a new era" said the country's largest-selling English newspaper The Times of India, which carried a photograph of Tendulkar with hands raised on reaching the mark, and also carried statistical highlights alongside its main story.

    "Legend, 50 times over," said the Hindustan Times in a similar page-one article while The Indian Express carried a boxed piece on its front page with the headline "Sachin cricket enters 51st century."

    Newspapers also carried pictures from the past on their sports pages, highlighting his various career achievements, milestones and memorable moments.

    Former India cricketers praised Tendulkar, whose 50th ton had been anticipated in a recent three-Test home series against New Zealand, but finally came in an away match that saw the famed Indian batting lineup struggle.

    "Indeed, coming generations will pinch themselves in disbelief that a cricketer such as Sachin Tendulkar ever walked in flesh and blood on this earth," wrote former India all-rounder Ravi Shastri in his column in Hindustan Times.

    "The master kept appointment with his 50th Test century in a situation most dire for the visitors," he added.

    Former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar called 50 test hundreds a "mind-boggling number" in his column in The Times of India.

    "It's a number that will put even people who played Test cricket in a bit of a daze. Imagine the effect on the poor cricket fan!" he wrote.

    Tendulkar helped India reach 454-8 in its second innings on Sunday when play was halted 50 minutes early because of strong winds at the SuperSport Park ground. It left the visiting team 30 runs short of South Africa's first-innings total of 620-4 declared.