Mumbai:While countering hostile conditions in New Zealand or South Africa is considered to be one of the biggest challenges for the Indian cricketers, the Junior World Cup-bound Under-19 team is hardly sweating over the prospect, courtesy some tips from none other than Sachin Tendulkar.
The batting maestro last week spoke to the young cricketers, who will play a tri-series in South Africa later in the month and then participate in the World Cup in New Zealand in January regarding the conditions and the challenges the team will encounter there, besides advising them on how to cope with it.
"Sachin talked to the team about the conditions. Besides he also advised them on how to approach the game, and what sort of technique batsmen have to adopt to be successful on those wickets," coach Chandrakant Pandit told reporters here today.
"His inputs are equal to almost half of our preparation that we would have had to do on reaching there (New Zealand)," he said.
"To tackle the bounce on the wickets there, the colts have practised batting on wickets covered with wet plastic with a rubber ball being thrown at them," the coach said.
Not only batsmen, Tendulkar had a word of caution for the bowlers too.
"He told us not to get carried away with the wicket conditions. Besides he talked to us about the ideal length to bowl on such wickets to extract swing and also stop runs," said left arm pacer Jaidev Unadkat.
"You will get help but it it will be of no use if you do not pick up wickets, he advised us," Unadkat said.
Captain Maneria said, "Tendulkar told us that the South Indians in the team will have more problems in adjusting to the conditions than the North Indians as the North Indians are accustomed to the cold, while the South Indians are habituated to warm conditions.
Maneria said the team also received some advice from former cricketer Sandeep Patil, who is the National Cricket Academy chief.
"Patil sent us some notes about the weather conditions, bounce and the windy conditions. Every member of the team has a copy of the notes," he said.
Despite all the advice, according to Pandit the team's success in South Africa and New Zealand would depend on how fast the players acclimatise to the conditions.
"The challenge is to acclimatise, to handle the windy conditions, and getting used to it in the first two-three games itself," he said.