| NEW DELHI
NEW DELHI Nov 5 The anticipation of Sachin
Tendulkar's 100th international century is the expected
highlight of the team's three-test series against West Indies
but India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni is not willing to let it
become a distraction.
Tendulkar has been stuck on 99 tons (51 in tests and 48 in
one dayers) since the 50-over World Cup earlier this year and
fans expect him to reach the milestone on home soil against a
West Indies attack not without its limitations.
"We will let him get the century and then we will speak
about it. Hopefully he gets it in this (the first) game and we
will speak about it on the fifth day," Dhoni told reporters
after Saturday's practice session at the Feroz Shah Kotla
"It's a milestone Sachin will achieve, whether in this game,
the next game or some other game. It's bound to happen.
"So rather than discussing too much ahead of the milestone
coming in, what we are doing is we said 'okay, let him get the
ton and then we'll talk about it'. We are thinking about how we
need to prepare for the series.
"Of course one he gets his ton, we all will celebrate with
him. It will be a big moment for Indian cricket."
Dhoni's seriousness stems from his determination to guide
India back to the top of test rankings after England dethroned
them with a 4-0 whitewash in August.
"We want to be the best in the world but it's not something
that belongs to you. You have to maintain it, you have to keep
"We did not do too well in England and that's why we are not
the number one team right now. Again it becomes a process and to
reach to the top of the world, you have to follow the process.
"It's the start of another process for us and hopefully we
will be focussed enough to do well, get there again and try to
With pace spearhead Zaheer Khan recovering from ankle
surgery and senior spinner Harbhajan Singh dropped, India will
have to rely on a relatively inexperienced attack to get those
20 wickets in each match.
Dhoni said at least two players, most likely off-spinner
Ravichandran Ashwin and either Umesh Yadav or fellow pace bowler
Varun Aaron, will make their test debuts on Sunday.
And the team would make sure they did not get too excited,
"It is not a difficult thing because if you see the bowlers
who have been selected, most of them have played the ODI format
which means they have fair amount of exposure when it comes to
"So I don't think they will really get excited.
"Of course, if we see something happening there are senior
players who will come to their rescue and help them out."
(Editing by John O'Brien; To comment on this story, email
Please double-click on the newslink below:
for more cricket stories