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Dhoni hopes for Laxman's recovery before second Test

Mahendra Singh Dhoni today said injured batsman VVS Laxman is recovering fast from the back spasm and a call to include him in the playing eleven would be taken on Saturday before the start of the second Test in Bangalore.

cricket Updated: Oct 08, 2010 20:08 IST

Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Friday said injured batsman VVS Laxman is recovering fast from the back spasm and a call to include him in the playing eleven would be taken on Saturday before the start of the second Test in Bangalore.

"Laxman is much better right now and we will talk a call (on him) tomorrow morning, depending on how he shapes before the game", Dhoni said at the pre-match press conference.

"Laxman did not practice today. It is difficult to say there is a 50-50 chance for Laxman to play tomorrow. He has recovered really well and we love to see him play but at the same time we need to remember that it is a longer format and it is really tough if you are injured in Test matches," the Indian skipper said.

Dhoni also expects an Australian comeback to draw Gavaskar-Border series 1-1, but said the team is ready to counter any such reply.

"They will come up strongly. That is their culture. They do not give up so easily. They will try their best shot here from tomorrow. We have prepared for that and will equally respond to the task."

On injured Ishant Sharma, who played a pivotal role in winning the first Test in Mohali, the skipper said, "he is bowling well in the nets right now and there is no niggle as far as his fitness is concerned."

Dhoni said if Ishant does not get match-fit on Saturday then Pacer S Sreesanth could be given a chance to support Zaheer Khan. "We will take a call tomorrow on fielding the best combination. It is good to have a right arm seamer to support a left arm seamer from the other end," he said.

On the fitness problems of Laxman and other team-members, Dhoni explained that players tried to make a full use of the three-day rest in between the matches.

"Of course, we recovered after the travelling day, and yesterday we had a long practice session and today slightly lighter practice session especially for the bowlers.

"It is pretty much the same and it happens every time. It is more important to rest more than practice during the rest days between test matches."

He also said that as of now everyone is available for selection, apart from Laxman. "But to my knowledge none of the players have anything regarding injuries."

Despite winning the Mohali Test, Dhoni said there are still some grey areas that need to be addressed.

"We need to improve quite a few areas since we cannot give too many runs with the new ball. Once, you got close to the opposition target, you should not lose wickets but get as much lead as possible. When the rivals bat, we need to try and stop the singles too to stop them from rotating strike easily," he said.