The Indian cricket team, set to embark on a tour of Sri Lanka, is all too aware of a historic landmark that Sachin Tendulkar is poised to achieve, but the upper most thought would be to win the series, according to skipper Anil Kumble.
Tendulkar needs another 172 runs to overhaul the retired Brian Lara's record of 11,953 runs in Tests. At present, the 35-year old Tendulkar, playing his 20th international season, is on 11,782 and is expected to get past the West Indian's milestone.
For record, Tendulkar, who made his Test debut against Pakistan in 1989, has so far played in 147 Tests, scoring 39 centuries and 49 half-centuries, averaging 55.31. Lara, who retired at the end of 2006, made 34 centuries and 48 half-centuries in 131 Tests, for an average of 52.88.
"We always feel proud that one of our team-mates is going to cross a landmark. Every time when there is a sense of achievement, it is not just for the individual but also for the team. But, the most important factor is that we go there and ensure a series victory. That will be on top of everybody's mind," Kumble remarked in the course of a media conference here Monday.
"I am sure that Sachin at some point of time will cross the landmark. It will be a huge achievement not just for him but also for Indian cricket. Sachin is confident. He has come back fully fit from groin injury. He is really fresh in mind and confident," Kumble added.
Tendulkar pulled out midway through the series against touring South Africa earlier this year due to groin injury that also kept him out of the initial phase of the Indian Premier League Twenty20 tournament in April-May.
The master batsman then skipped the tri-series in Bangladesh and the Asia Cup before returning to the team for the forthcoming series against Sri Lanka.