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Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Cricket: Tendulkar set for 400th one-dayer

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India superstar Sachin Tendulkar will on Thursday become the second player to feature in 400 one-day internationals.

Tendulkar will open the batting against Australia in the fifth match of the seven-ODI series against Australia, with the tourists leading 2-1.

Meanwhile, uncapped batsman Subramaniam Badrinath, 27, comes into the squad to replace the injured Gautam Gambhir.

He hit a double century for India A against South Africa and said of his chance: "It's a dream come true."

Badrinath added: "Playing for India has been a childhood dream for me and I am delighted that I am close to achieving that now."

Gambhir will miss the rest of the series after sitting out Monday's victory over the world champions.

The toss in Vadodara on Thursday could be absolutely crucial, with no team yet able to post a win when batting second.

Their batsmen had struggled until that triumph in Chandigarh, in which Tendulkar made a battling 79 and Sourav Ganguly weighed in with 41.

Chief selector Dilip Vengsarkar warned last week that senior players' places would come under threat from the likes of Badrinath unless their form improved.

He said of the Tamil Nadu right-hander: "Players like Badrinath are waiting for their chance and you cannot ignore them.

"It's a professional set-up and nobody can take their place for granted."

The squad for the remaining two matches will be decided after Thursday's encounter.

Meanwhile, Sree Santh, India's fast bowler, has admitted he taunted Andrew Symonds after the Australian batsman was dismissed on Monday.

Santh told reporters he used the words: "Hard luck, you're going to lose now" to the Queensland all-rounder, but denied allegations that he had also clapped in his face.

The irony was that the hot-headed Santh had been rested for the encounter, but was in the vicinty of Australia's batsmen as they walked back to the dressing-room.

India have lost just once in five matches in Vadodara, a city in the dry state of Gujarat, and racked up 341-3 in beating West Indies here in January.

The only other player to reach 400 caps in one-dayers is Sanath Jayasuriya, 38, who on Wednesday was playing his 402nd match in Colombo against England.

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