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Page last updated at 13:51 GMT, Friday, 26 September 2008 14:51 UK

Tendulkar boost for Aussie Tests

Sachin Tendulkar
Tendulkar has scored more than 11,800 runs in 150 Tests

India batsman Sachin Tendulkar has won his fitness battle for the forthcoming Test series against Australia after recovering from an elbow injury.

The 35-year-old will join the India training camp next week for the series beginning on 9 October, following tests with physiotherapist Paul Close.

Tendulkar was injured during the final Test against Sri Lanka in August.

The Indian Cricket Board had earlier restrained the batsman from playing as Close said Tendulkar needed more rest.

Tendulkar's fitness is a major boost for India as they consider their batting line-up.

He holds the record for the most centuries in Tests, with 39 in 150 matches, and is only 77 short of beating Brian Lara's record for the most runs in Test cricket, the former West Indies captain having retired with a total of 11,953.

Tendulkar has had a number of injury problems in recent years and missed the first two matches against Australia four years ago because he was suffering from tennis elbow.

He underwent corrective surgery on his left elbow in May 2005, but jarred the joint while attempting to take a catch during the third Test against Sri Lanka in August.

Although he was ruled out of the one-day series which followed, team officials insisted the injury would only put him out of action for two to three weeks.

With Tendulkar, former captains Rahul Dravid and Sourav Ganguly, and VVS Laxman all in their mid-30s, there have been calls for the introduction of some younger talent.

But with Australia having named two uncapped spin bowlers, Bryce McGain and Jason Krejza, in their squad for the tour, the expectation was that India would name their strongest possible top six in order to try and capitalise on that potential weakness.

Speaking on Thursday, Tendulkar said Tests against Australia were now even bigger than those against regional rivals Pakistan for the Indian team.

"All the series we have played in the recent past, from 2001, have all been close ones," he commented.

"As we all know, (Australia) is the number one team in the world. They will come here with serious force. They still have a lot of experienced players in the team. It is not that it is a completely transformed side with no senior players in the team."

see also
Australians commit to India tour
16 Sep 08 |  Cricket
Symonds vows to improve behaviour
16 Sep 08 |  Australia
Australia gamble on spin rookies
12 Sep 08 |  Cricket
Australia in India 2008
09 Apr 08 |  Cricket

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