Sachin Tendulkar 38 not out after day one of India v West Indies
|Second Test, Mumbai (day one):|
|West Indies 182 v India 157-2|
India legend Sachin Tendulkar stylishly moved to 38 not out on the first day of his 200th and final Test match.
Arriving at the crease in his home city of Mumbai with India 77-2 after West Indies had been bowled out for 182, the 40-year-old took the hosts to 157-2.
After almost pushing his first delivery to short leg, Tendulkar swept his third ball to get off the mark.
He went on to strike six boundaries in 73 balls, sharing an unbroken stand of 80 with Cheteshwar Pujara.
Tendulkar, the highest runscorer in international cricket, was greeted by a rapturous reception at the Wankhede Stadium when he came to the crease after West Indies off-spinner Shane Shillingford took two wickets in an over.
Supporters with cameras leaned over barricades as Tendulkar descended the pavilion steps, and Windies players formed a guard of honour on the square.
He initially showed signs of nerves, prodding at his first delivery from Shillingford before aiming an ugly slog-sweep at the same bowler to get under way with a single.
But, from there, Tendulkar showed the class and poise that have brought him 18,426 runs in 463 one-day internationals and, prior to this match, 15,847 runs in 199 Tests.
Shillingford was hit to the off-side boundary off front foot and back, with the pace of Shannon Gabriel eased through the covers for another four.
Taking most of the strike, Tendulkar remained positive, unfurling a trademark on-drive to send Windies captain Darren Sammy to the fence.
With his mother in attendance for the first time in his Test career - even she received a standing ovation when shown on the big screen inside the ground - Tendulkar negotiated Sammy's last over of the day to ensure he will resume what could be the final innings of his career on Friday.
West Indies' poor showing with the bat after losing the toss could mean Tendulkar has only one opportunity to bat.
The tourists were skittled in only 55.2 overs, with left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha taking 5-40. Kieran Powell top-scored with 48, while Shivnarine Chanderpaul, in his 150th Test, made 25.
Tendulkar's final match caps a month-long outpouring of emotion from a cricket-mad nation of 1.2 billion people which started when he confirmed that the series against West Indies would be his last.
Such has been the interest in Tendulkar's final match that a website selling tickets crashed shortly after opening, receiving 19.7 million hits in the first hour.
Fans have staged protests against the fact that only 5,000 of the 33,000 tickets went on public sale, with the remainder of the seats being filled by politicians, celebrities, former players and corporate guests.
The area around the Wankhede Stadium has been plastered with posters and murals of the player dubbed the "Little Master".
Tendulkar's wife, Anjali, has joked that they may require a museum to house all the gifts and mementos.
Meanwhile, tributes have been flocking in from some of Tendulkar's most illustrious contemporaries.
West Indies great Brian Lara described the India star as "the Muhammad Ali and the Michael Jordan of cricket".
Lara, who scored 11,953 runs in 131 Tests, added: "Tendulkar has had the greatest cricket career of anyone who has ever played the game."
Former Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne also praised the prolific batsman.
"There will not be another Sachin Tendulkar," Warne, who took 708 Test wickets, wrote in his Daily Telegraph column. "He was the best batsman of my generation."