Exclusive: Sachin Tendulkar weighs in India's Test series against Australia

Hard pitches, pace and bounce are a given in cricket Down Under, but conditions have changed over the years, Sachin Tendulkar says ahead of the India vs Australia Test series.  

Sachin Tendulkar scored 1809 runs in Australia, at a staggering average of 53.21.   -  Jignesh Mistry

Ahead of a marquee clash in Test cricket, India's four-match series versus Australia, Sachin Tendulkar speaks extensively to The Hindu/Sportstar on a range of topics including this key tour.

As an 18-year-old, Tendulkar won the approving nod and admiration of the Australian cricket fraternity when he scored an unconquered 148 in the first innings of the Sydney Test and 114 in the first innings of the Perth Test – both on his debut tour of Down Under in 1991-92. His ability to negotiate the bouncy Australian tracks and that too against the likes of Craig McDermott, Bruce Reid, Merv Hughes, Paul Reiffel and Mike Whitney established his credentials – early on – as a batsman of supreme talent.

READ: ‘We have a huge opportunity in Australia’

Tendulkar scored 1809 runs in Australia, at a staggering average of 53.21. India captain Virat Kohli needs just eight runs to reach the 1000-run milestone in Australia.

So what does Australia demand of a young cricketer touring the country?

Tendulkar replies, "It’s the hardness of the surface, pace and bounce."

However, he does point to dramatic changes over the years. "When I played there in the 1990s, there were not many high scoring games in Perth. Sometimes 500 would be scored in both innings put together. But if you see in the last decade or so, Perth has been a hunting ground for the batters. They score there in hundreds. Last time England played Australia, close to 1300 runs were scored in just three innings."

Read the full interview in the coming issue of Sportstar.