Calcutta (The Telegraph): There was shock when India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni announced (at the toss) that Sachin Tendulkar had been rested for Sunday’s face-off against Australia.
That remained the talking point even after India’s four-wicket win over the hosts, a rare happening this summer Down Under. However, according to a member of the team management, Sachin himself wanted a break.
It wasn’t possible to get a confirmation from The Master.
“Sachin has been playing almost non-stop since the Boxing Day Test and chose to rest... It was after nets on Saturday that Sachin informed the coach (Duncan Fletcher) that he’d like to take a break... There’s nothing more to it,” the gentleman told The Telegraph.
He added: “As Sachin only wanted to rest for one match, he’ll definitely be back in the XI on Tuesday, against Sri Lanka.”
That match, too, is in Adelaide.
Interestingly, at the media conference, MoM Gautam Gambhir took the following line: “It’s important to rotate, given the amount of cricket we play... When we don’t, everybody has a problem. When we rotate, then also it’s an issue... To be honest, this was the best XI.”
The last bit, clearly, is a huge comment and is unlikely to be well received in many quarters.
For Sachin, the most prolific run-getter and the No. 1 century-maker in both Tests and ODIs, the ongoing tri-series marks his comeback in the 50-over version of cricket.
Sachin is, of course, still one short of 100 International hundreds — his last three-figure innings was 11 months ago, in the 2011 World Cup.