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Sachin feels they have lost two wickets too many

Nagpur, Nov 6 (UNI) Sachin Tendulkar, who hit his 40th Test century today, felt that India were in a good position though it would have been better if they had lost two wickets less.

Speaking to the media after the first day's play of the fourth and final Test match between India and Australia being played at the spanking new Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA) stadium at Jamtha on the outskirts of the city, today, Tendulkar said when he came into bat, India were in a precarious position and the need of the hour was to keep a cool head and build a partnership.

''I am happy I was able to do that along with Laxman and put our side into a strong position,'' he said.

Speaking about emotions playing a role in this match with the retirement of Sourav Ganguly after this Test and Kumble's retirement after the last Test, Sachin admitted that the emotions were very much there, but once you crossed the ropes and into the field then it was purely the focus on the game.

''Once you cross the line into the ground you keep your emotions in check and concentrate and focus only on the match. Even Sourav once he stepped in, he would have been thinking only about the game,'' Sachin added.

Sachin said winning the toss is an advantage, but backing it up with good batting is necessary.

''The wicket is surely going to take turn and we are in a good position, therefore we are confident of being able to hold our own in this Test, though in a Test match you never know what will happen with four days still left in the match,'' he said.

The batting maestro also said it was staisfying to get a hundred after about six Tests and that too when the team needed it.

''It was not that I had been playing badly, but only I was not getting to the three figure mark. However, I was happy since I had made runs when the team needed it like in Mohali and also Delhi. The team performance is finally of paramount importance.'' The leading run scorer in Test cricket, also refuted suggestions that he had lost focus in the middle.

''There was a patch when I was not focussing properly, but that went away very fast and I wanted to bat till the end of the day,'' he added.

Sachin also praised debutant M Vijay, saying he looked a compact batsman with a good technique and he has a long future ahead with the Indian team.

On whether he would rate this ton among his best, Sachin said ''for him each and every century is different and every ton has its significance as to how it has helped the team do, so I do not think I can pick which have been my best tons and which are not. For me all are equally important.'' To another query whether he is now trying to reach the 50 Test century mark, Sachin said he does not think about all this.

''For me the team performance means the most and in that if I can get to certain landmarks than it is good,'' he concluded.


Story first published: Thursday, November 6, 2008, 19:08 [IST]
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