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Sachin backs India to fight back

Sachin Tendulkar is of course backing the home team to fight back in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy and wants India’s ‘spirit’ to shine.

Sachin backs India to fight back
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Sachin Tendulkar

Bengaluru

Sachin Tendulkar expects India to hit back hard in the second Test against Australia beginning Saturday in Bengaluru after their shock defeat in the opening encounter. Australia’s crushing 333-run win in the first Test in Pune last weekend was the tourists’ first victory in India since 2004 and ended a 19-match unbeaten run for Virat Kohli’s world No.1 ranked team. 

India’s much-vaunted batting line-up was skittled out for just 105 and 107, and their spinners – ranked the best slow bowlers in the world – were upstaged by their unfancied Australian counterparts. But while the result silenced predictions of another Indian whitewash against the Australians, batting legend Tendulkar is convinced the hosts will put it behind them by the time the second Test starts.

“It was a tough Test match for us but it is part and parcel of the game ... Knowing the spirit of the Indian team I know that they will fight back hard,” said Tendulkar, who is Test cricket’s record run-scorer. “There are good moments and there are tough moments but it is all about how you stand back on your feet again and start competing. That is what makes the sport interesting.” 

Confidence had been sky high in the home camp going into the four-match series after setting an Indian record of 19 Tests unbeaten. But the outcome of the first Test means they must now avoid defeat in Bengaluru if they are to reclaim the Border-Gavaskar trophy which has been in Australia’s possession since they beat India 2-0 at home in 2014-15. 

Much will depend on whether skipper Kohli,  also India need their main spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja to fire after their relatively disappointing performances in Pune.

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