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Bowling woes for Dhoni as India aim to go for the kill

cricket Updated: Nov 19, 2010 13:25 IST

PTI
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Mahendra Singh Dhoni would be desperate to sort out his team's bowling woes when they take on New Zealand in the third and final cricket Test of three-match series, starting from Saturday, amidst threat of weather playing a spoilsport.

After not being able to break the deadlock in the first two Tests in Ahmedabad and Hyderabad respectively, the Indian team will be looking to go all out for an elusive victory against the New Zealanders here at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Jamtha.

Even Daniel Vettori-led Black Caps would also be aiming to script a historic away series win against India.

This will also be the last chance, before the World Cup, for Sachin Tendulkar to complete his historic 50th Test ton in front of his countrymen.

If Tendulkar fails to reach the three figure mark here, he would still have a chance to reach the milestone in South Africa. But completing the half century of Test tons in front of his countrymen would surely be extra special.

The pressure is no doubt there on the maestro who had been able to accumulate only 65 runs from his three innings in the series so far. He hasn't been in the best of touch but one can expect him to rise to the occasion as he has done it time and again during his 21 years of international career.

While Indians would pray for the rains not to disrupt the proceedings, Dhoni will also expect that he gets a strip where it won't take his team "10 days" to extract a result.

The weather conditions improved on Frwith the sun beating down but the Indian team couldn't start their net session as per their 9 am schedule.

Around quarter past 10, rival coaches Gary Kirsten and Mark Greatbatch came to inspect the centre strip.

With the curator promising a sporting wicket, the bowling combination for India will be the bone of contention during the next five days. With team's pace spearhead Zaheer Khan ruled out due to injury, there will be an additional pressure on senior pro Harbhajan Singh to shoulder the burden of leading the attack.

Harbhajan may have had the most memorable time wielding his willow to good effect, having scored back-to-back centuries with a total of 295 runs in the series but he hasn't been able to bother the New Zealand batsmen with the ball.

Agreed he didn't get much purchase from the previous two strips but one can't deny the fact that his bowling nowadays lacks the bite he used to have earlier on sub-continent pitches.