Tendulkar’s head will spin

Sachin Tendulkar’s 200th Test is going to be special for many reasons. Amid the debate on whether the “Little Master” should play at all at home or not in Mumbai, visitors West Indies are planning to spoil his party using Saqlain Mushtaq’s doosra spin bowling.

Former Pakistan off-spinner Mushtaq is training the Caribbean spinners on mastering the art of the doosra ahead of the India tour in December.

Mushtaq’s variety of spin had proved to be Tendulkar’s Achilles heel throughout his career.

And now, through a special camp held at the High Performance Centre in Barbados, spinners Devendra Bishoo, Shane Shillingford and Ashley Nash are learning trade secrets from Mushtaq to tackle Tendulkar in his final Test.

Ask Mushtaq about his new assignment and he smiles.

“Touring India is always a challenge for any team and now that Sachin will be playing his 200th Test, the pressure will be more on the bowlers. At the moment, I’m assessing our spinners keeping all these factors in mind,” he said.

The last time West Indies travelled to India a couple of years back, lack of quality spinners proved costly for Darren Sammy’s side.

“For any bowler playing at the international level, it’s important to be physically and mentally strong. A batsman like Sachin will test your character and you can’t just give up,” Mushtaq said. “To beat him, you have to read his body language and have patience. You need to judge him well and while bowling to Sachin, you will have to allow him to go for shots and then you need to counter back.”