Zeenews Sports Bureau
New Delhi: Master blaster Sachin Tendulkar, who just left the Indian shores with six other players for Australia, is all set to complete yet another feat upon his arrival Down Under. Not many anticipated the 38-year-old Tendulkar’s return to the Aussie soil three years later.
It is not the hundred centuries in international cricket that fans all over are waiting for but the batting maestro will become the first Indian to tour Australia for a record fifth time. Dilip Vengsarkar held the Indian record for four Australia tours (1977-78, 1980-81, 1985-86 and 1991-1992). Vengsarkar was also part of the Indian team that won the 1985 World Championship of Cricket in Australia.
The last time India toured Australia was in 2007, led by Anil Kumble. That trip was not short of any spectacular moments, to which all the India-Australia encounters have lived up to in the past. In the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, 2007–08, Tendulkar became the leading run scorer with 493 runs in four Tests, despite consistently failing in the second innings. Sachin scored 62 runs in the first innings of the first Test at the MCG in Melbourne, but couldn`t prevent a heavy 337-run win for Australia. In the controversial New Year`s Test at Sydney, Tendulkar scored an unbeaten 154 in which India lost the Test. This was his third century at the SCG, earning him an average of 221.33 on the ground.
In the third Test at the WACA in Perth, Tendulkar was instrumental in India`s first innings score of 330, scoring a well compiled 71, as India went on to record a historic triumph at the WACA. In the fourth Test at Adelaide, which ended in a draw, he scored 153 in the first innings, involving a crucial 126 run stand with VVS Laxman for the fifth wicket to lead India to a score of 282 for 5 from 156 for 4. He secured the Player of the Match award.
In fact, if you consider the matches since 1990, Tendulkar comes second in the best Test averages list by overseas batsmen in Australia – the first being his compatriot Virender Sehwag. Out of 16 matches Sachin scored 1,522 runs at an average of 58.53. Sehwag averages 59.50 out of 7 matches with a score of 833. VVS Laxman comes third with an average of 54.05 (minimum qualification: 750 Test runs).