Tendulkar to perform mentor's role

The 'Master Blaster' to guide the young side.

Tendulkar to perform mentor's role

Melbourne: Sachin Tendulkar has always relished being a mentor to upcoming players but during the current One-Day International triangular series in Australia, he has to shoulder that burden to a greater degree in the absence of Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid.

Though Sachin may be shortest of all the Indian players but he towers above with the sheer weight of his stature.

Even as Indian cricket undertakes the bumpy road to transition, Tendulkar stands out as the bridge that leads to the future. For a team, whose average age is just 23, it's just ideal that they have Tendulkar as their cornerstone.

"The experience of Sachin is very vital for the team and he is sharing it with the younger lot," India’s assistant coach Lalchand Rajput said.

Sources have confirmed to CNN-IBN that the team management has clear instructions from the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to keep Tendulkar in the loop about all the important decisions taken on the tour.

Even the tour selection committee takes all the vital decisions with his consent. He is keen to share his wisdom, but more importantly is also doling out crash courses to the youngsters on how to stand up to the likes of Sri Lankan spin whiz Muttiah Muralitharan and Aussie pace spearhead Brett Lee.

"Hum log ye try ker rahe ki jitna information hum log unse nikal paye utna accha hai hamare lie. Basically main bhi unse Murali ka jo doosra aur bowling ke bare me pooch raha tha (We are trying to get out as much information as we can out of him. I asked him about Murali's doosra)," young batsman Rohit Sharma said.

Ganguly and Dravid are not in the side and the new team management has made its choices clear. Though short on experience, they are keen on making a team for future.

The likes of Suresh Raina, Rohit Sharma and Manoj Tiwari look promising but all they want is some time.

"Chances agar diya jae youngsters ko kyunki jitne bhi youngsters hain team me kafi accha ker rahe, chahe batting ho, bowling ho ya fielding ho. To thoda aap ek do match se judge nahi ker pate koi bhi player ko. Thoda chances milna chahiye (The youngsters in the team should get more chances as they are doing well in batting, bowling and fielding. A player cannot be judged by a few games)," Sharma said.

For more than 18 years Tendulkar has shouldered the responsibility of Indian cricket but on this tour his role is special.

He not only has to contribute as a player but he is also a friend, philosopher and guide of a young side trying to make a mark on the tour.

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2 New Zealand 2406 115
3 India 3085 114
4 England 4326 106
5 Sri Lanka 2454 91
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2 India 5819 119
3 New Zealand 3716 116
4 Australia 3941 109
5 South Africa 3345 108
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2 England 5959 271
3 India 9319 266
4 Pakistan 6009 261
5 South Africa 4380 258
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