Sachin Tendulkar will celebrate another significant milestone today, as the Little Master turns 40.
Since he burst on to the scene as a 16-year-old at Karachi in 1989, Tendulkar has become the leading Test and one-day runscorer of all-time, amassing a phenomenal 34,273 runs in his 24-year career.
His record of 100 international centuries is a dedication to his longevity and class, while even his leg-spin deliveries have claimed the scalps of 200 international batsmen.
His place in the Indian team has increasingly come up for debate, however. In his past 12 Tests, Tendulkar has averaged just 22.52 and passed fifty on only two occasions.
His last Test century was over two years ago and it took him a year to bring up his 100th international century against minnows Bangladesh in a one-dayer in March last year.
The great man himself has offered only a limited insight regarding retirement.
Speaking six months ago, he said: "I am 39-plus and it is not abnormal for me to think of retirement. I will go by what my heart says. At this moment, my heart says I am OK."
Tendulkar has since retired from the 50-over game in a bid to prolong his 198-Test career.
When asked last week if he was closer to calling time, Tendulkar offered a blunt rebuke.
"People have been talking about my retirement since 2005, but that does not worry me at all," he said.
"Your job is to write, my job is to play. I will stick to my job and you stick to yours."
The Little Master at the crease, 1989
Not auditioning for a Jackson 5 tribute band in 1989
Feb 1993: Sachin Tendulkar of India celebrates his maiden test century in his home country after victory in the Second Test match against England played in Madras
Ee bah gum. At the Oval ahead of his debut for Yorkshire in 1992.
Just missing a flock of sheep in the background...
South Africa v India 3rd Test - Day 3
CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA - JANUARY 04: Sachin Tendulkar of India celebrates his 51st Test century during day 3 of the 3rd Test match between South Africa and India at Newlands Stadium on January 04, 2011 in Cape Town, South Africa. (Photo by Duif du Toit/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar raises
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar raises his helmet in celebration after scoring a century (100 runs) during the third day of the second Test match between Sri Lanka and India at The Sinhalese Sports Club Ground in Colombo on July 28, 2010. Indian veteran Tendulkar hit a defiant unbeaten 39 but Sri Lanka tightened the screws on the third day of the second cricket Test on Wednesday. India, replying to Sri Lanka's mammoth first innings score of 642-4 declared, lost the important wicket of Venkatsai Laxman in the post-lunch session to move to 243-4 by tea. AFP PHOTO/ Lakruwan WANNIARACHCHI. (Photo credit should read LAKRUWAN WANNIARACHCHI/AFP/Getty Images)
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar poses
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar poses with the ICC Cricket World Cup trophy with the Gateway of India monument in the background during a photo call at the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai on April 3, 2011. India won the Cricket World Cup for the first time since 1983 with a six-wicket victory over Sri Lanka on April 2. AFP PHOTO/STR (Photo credit should read STRDEL/AFP/Getty Images)
India v Sri Lanka - 2011 ICC World Cup Final
MUMBAI, INDIA - APRIL 02: Sachin Tendulkar of India celebrates with the trophy after the 2011 ICC World Cup Final between India and Sri Lanka at Wankhede Stadium on April 2, 2011 in Mumbai, India. (Photo by Hamish Blair/Getty Images)
Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh lifts team
Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh lifts teammate Sachin Tendulkar (R) to celebrate his century and India's win on the fifth and final day of the first Test between India and England at the M.A. Chidambaram stadium in Chennai on December 15, 2008. India won the match by 6 wickets to lead the two match series 1-0. AFP PHOTO/Indranil MUKHERJEE (Photo credit should read INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP/Getty Images)
Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar kisses h
Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar kisses his helmet after scoring his hundred century (100 runs) during the one day international (ODI) Asia Cup cricket match between India and Bangladesh at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka on March 16, 2012. India's Sachin Tendulkar became the first batsman in history to score 100 international centuries, adding another milestone in his record-breaking career. AFP PHOTO/Munir uz ZAMAN (Photo credit should read MUNIR UZ ZAMAN/AFP/Getty Images)
Indian fans celebrate as they watch cric
Indian fans celebrate as they watch cricketer Sachin Tendulkar scoring his 100th century, on a television set inside a shop in Mumbai on March 16, 2012. India's Sachin Tendulkar became the first batsman in history to score 100 international centuries, adding another milestone in his record-breaking career. AFP PHOTO/Punit PARANJPE (Photo credit should read PUNIT PARANJPE/AFP/Getty Images)
Indian cricket fans hold placards and po
Indian cricket fans hold placards and posters as they celebrate after Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar scored his 100th century in the One Day International (ODI) Asia Cup cricket match between India and Bangladesh at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka, in Amritsar on March 17, 2012. India's Sachin Tendulkar on March 16, became the first batsman in history to score 100 international centuries, adding another milestone in his record-breaking career. AFP PHOTO/NARINDER NANU (Photo credit should read NARINDER NANU/AFP/Getty Images)
Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar (R) reacts as Bollwood singer Asha Bhonsle kisses his hand at a function to launch the music of her debut film 'Mai' - Mother - in Mumbai on January 22, 2013. The film ‘Mai’, which is Bhosale’s maiden film, conveys a strong social message to take care of the elderly suffering from Almitzer’s disease which creates partial or total memory loss (a state of dementia) in the patient. AFP PHOTO/Indranil MUKHERJEE (Photo credit should read INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP/Getty Images)