There have been reports that the Left liberals have ‘cancelled’ Sunil Gavaskar after he received an honorary doctorate from the RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat. The degree was conferred at the first convocation of Sri Sathya Sai University of Human Excellence at Muddenahalli, Karnataka and has led to the Left Liberals `cancelling’ him out. There was a time when Gavaskar had been widely hailed for his act of saving a Muslim family in his neighbourhood during the 1993 riots. The reason for this turnaround by the Left liberals is that he had identified himself with the right-wing forces and the RSS. Nothing could be more petty than this. The degree was awarded to the legendary cricketer for his feats as an exceptional sportsman. How should it matter as to who was awarding the degree. The RSS Chief is an eminent Indian in his own right and while the opponents of this organsation are free to oppose him ideologically, they cannot deny that he holds a very important position and influences the lives of lakhs of people. Gavaskar is arguably the greatest Indian batsman even though statistically Sachin Tendulkar has greater achievements. During his playing era, the Little Master scored runs against the most ferocious balling attacks in the world. No Bowler of the present era can come anywhere close to the vicious pace of the West Indies bowlers led by Michael Holding and Malcolm Marshal and the ferocity of Dennis Lille and Jeff Thomson as also the extraordinary attack of Wasim Akram and other Pakistani pacers. Gavaskar was also the first batsman to break the record of Donald Bradman and he did it in great style at the Ferozeshah Kotla grounds in the early 1980s. His comments on the TV and in major sports programmes have a lot of gravitas and it is not without reason he is respected and revered all over the Cricketing world. The Border-Gavaskar trophy for contests between India and Australia are a tribute both to him and the former Aussie skipper. Therefore, before critcising him, the Left Liberals should separate politics from the incredible feats of this master sportsman. Gavaskar’s prescription for young players is both out of experience and hard work. He is an inspiration for many and Indian greats such as Kapil Dev, Saurav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Virat Kohli hold him in very high esteem. There was a time when Bishen Bedi, one of the greatest spinners of all time named his son after Gavaskar. The little master also had his own favourites and named his own son Rohan after his ideal, Rohan Kanhai. The honorary doctorate is well deserved and acknowledges his many achievements. In fact, more universities should also step forward and honour exceptional sports personalities. The Delhi University which is celebrating its centenary year must set an example. Sunil Gavaskar is a man we have all grownup watching and his exploits on the cricket field despite the limitations of the Indian team at times were out of the world. To play genuine pace without any protective gear required both skill and very sharp reflexes. A well deserved doctorate.