Hussey wary of Tendulkar's prowess at SCG as he pursues 100th century


Click to follow
The Independent Online

Sachin Tendulkar's incredible record at Sydney Cricket Ground makes Mike Hussey nervous but the Australian batsman and his team- mates will do everything to prolong the Indian great's agonising wait for his 100th international century when the second Test starts tomorrow.

Tendulkar, stranded on 99 centuries in one-day internationals and Tests since March, averages a mammoth 221-plus at SCG and underlined his form with a fluent 73 in Melbourne last week.

"I can assure you that everyone in our dressing room does not want him to make a 100," Hussey said. "I'm a bit nervous as the stars seem to be aligning with Sachin needing one more 100. [It's] the 100th Test in Sydney and he's made runs here before.

"It's a little bit ominous but hopefully we can make him wait until after this series and he can get a 100 in the the next series he plays."

Tendulkar's team-mate Rohit Sharma said he was not putting himself under any pressure ahead of the game. "I'm sure he's not thinking of that. Sydney is his lucky ground, so hopefully it happens here," said Sharma, whose other wish would be to make his Test debut at SCG.

The last time the teams met at SCG was in 2008 when a row involving Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh being accused of racially abusing Andrew Symonds soured relations between the sides. "That was a long time ago and the personalities and teams have changed quite a lot, particularly in our team," Hussey said.

Hussey predicted the SCG would regain its spin-friendly reputation even though the ground favoured pace bowlers in the previous two new year Tests against Pakistan and England.

"The last few years have been seamer friendly," he added. "This looks definitely a lighter colour and, generally, that's the way it's gone over here. It slows down and helps the spinners as the game goes on."

Hussey's words would be music to the ears of off-spinner Nathan Lyon, who would lose out to Australia's returning fast bowler Ryan Harris should the team opt for a four-pronged pace attack.

Lyon did not help his cause with a one-wicket performance in Melbourne in Australia's 122-run victory last week.