| Wright: Optimistic
Auckland: Even as India coach John Wright hoped his batsmen will give the New Zealand public a display of what they are capable of in the seven one-day Internationals starting Thursday, injury scare hit the Indian camp.
Batting superstar Sachin Tendulkar Tuesday sprained his right ankle during practice.
Sachin was bowling at nets and complained of pain in his ankle after completing his quota of overs. He is undergoing ice-treatment.
Team manager Nathu Ram Choudhary said Sachin felt confident he would be fit in time for the first one-dayer. “I had a word with Sachin and he seems confident he would be fit for Thursday’s game,” Choudhary said.
He said as of now the injury did not appear to be a fracture or ligament tear. “We are all keeping a close eye on his injury and hopefully he should be fit for the game. At present it is too early to comment on it,” he said.
Tendulkar had missed the entire seven-match one-day series at home against West Indies last month because of a hamstring strain.
Wright’s wards come off a 0-2 drubbing in the two-Test series in which only three batsmen from the two sides managed to sufficiently counter the weather-affected pitches in Wellington and Hamilton to score half-centuries — India’s Rahul Dravid (76) and Sachin (51) and New Zealand’s Mark Richardson (89).
“The one-day pitches will suit the batsmen more,” Wright said. “I hope our batsmen can go out and show the cricket people of New Zealand how they have become one of the most feared line-ups in world cricket.”
For the seven one-dayers in New Zealand, India have sent fast bowlers Jawagal Srinath and uncapped Rakesh Patel, leg-spinner Anil Kumble and batsman Yuvraj Singh to join the rest of the squad.
New Zealand have left out Scott Styris, one of the more accomplished one-day players during this year’s series in the West Indies when he had scores of 85 and 63 batting at number six and took six for 25 in the fourth match.
He has been deemed the unlucky man among the allrounders — for the first two matches at least — and must now do the business in domestic one-dayers to get back into the frame.