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Dhoni will pull out all stops to ensure Tendulkar gets a perfect send off

cricket Updated: Nov 06, 2013 07:52 IST
Sai Mohan
Sai Mohan
Hindustan Times
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Forget about Sudhir Gautam and all the possessed Sachin Tendulkar fans. MS Dhoni is as big, if not the biggest, Tendulkar fan. In 2007, it was Tendulkar who recommended Dhoni's name for captaincy to then BCCI president Sharad Pawar.

After the 2009 series win in New Zealand, Tendulkar said: "This is the happiest dressing room atmosphere I've been a part of. Before he (Dhoni) was made the captain, standing in the slips I interacted with him and picked a lot of things which clearly indicated he has a sharp brain. His approach was pretty clear and not complicated."

Tendulkar, who has played under six captains, showered the ultimate praise on Dhoni after the 2011 World Cup. "He is the best captain I've played under."

Dhoni, who called Adam Gilchrist and Tendulkar his idols, has continued to wave proudly the Tendulkar flag since taking over as captain. On Tuesday, he was at it, again. Tendulkar's been talking to the youngsters here. On Monday, it was Ajinkya Rahane, and on Tuesday, it was Virat Kohli.

"It's just now that Sachin has announced these will be his last two Test matches that people are noticing it," Dhoni said.

Asked about Tendulkar's unhappiness over CAB's over-the-top celebrations, he said: "You want me to judge his body language? I'll leave that to you guys (the media)." On whether India "want to win the series for Sachin", he said: "As far as dedicating a victory is concerned, first and foremost we need to focus on cricket and look to win the series. Once we've won, we can decide who to dedicate it to."

India beat West Indies by an innings and 15 runs when they last met here two years ago. After whitewashing Australia this year, a balanced team returns with a likely debut for Rohit Sharma. The bowling attack is likely to be Umesh Yadav, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, R Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha. Shikhar Dhawan returns as opener.

Chris Gayle will be a big crowd-puller, and West Indies, under Darren Sammy, are a hungry bunch wanting to prove a point.

FULL COVERAGE: Sachin's last bow

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