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Rain interferes with schedule

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FIRING AWAY: Rahul Dravid and teammates going through fielding drills on the second day of the camp.
FIRING AWAY: Rahul Dravid and teammates going through fielding drills on the second day of the camp.

Special Correspondent

Top-order batsmen practise fluently

  • Manoj Tiwary impresses captain and coaches
  • Sehwag troubled by rising deliveries

    KOLKATA: Showers on Thursday afternoon threatened to interfere with the training schedule of the conditioning camp but the indoor facility came handy; the players moved into the Pankaj Gupta Practice Centre for a short while, before coming out for another session at the Eden Gardens.

    Tendulkar recovering

    Sachin Tendulkar, who skipped the morning workout owing to the injury he sustained on Wednesday, had a longish knock indoors and moved around the Gardens without any limp or discomfort.

    If Tendulkar's condition came as a relief, it was heartening to see India's top order batsmen play so fluently. Sourav Ganguly exuded confidence with his masterly display of stroke-play, while Yuvraj Singh and Rahul Dravid were pleasant to watch.

    Virender Sehwag, who had looked a bit troubled against the rising balls to his ribcage, pummelled Ranadeb Bose twice with savage power.

    No update on Laxman

    When contacted, the administrative manager, Surendra Bhave, dispelled any doubts on Tendulkar's quick recovery and said John Gloster was quite happy with the healing process. He said icepack treatment would continue. Bhave said he had no update on the arrival of V.V.S. Laxman.

    The morning session was devoted to fitness drills and fielding practice during which catching was given a lot of importance. The nearly two-hour session was fully utilised by the coaching staff to put the boys through drills to fine-tune many aspects concerning the game.

    Watched by fielding coach Robin Singh, the players spend almost 40 minutes practising pick-up and throws at a single stump, while bowling coach B.K. Venkatesh Prasad put the boys through high catches and ground fielding.

    Young Manoj Tiwary, the new face in the ODI squad, was most impressive with his fielding ability and seemed to have impressed the captain and other coaches. He had got a pat on the back from Rahul Dravid after the batting session on Wednesday.

    Practising indoors

    As the rain had drenched the playing field before the afternoon session, the players had to be taken to the indoor centre. There the boys had a batting session for almost 90 minutes before coming out to play in the centre pitch.

    With Prasad watching, almost all the top-ranking bowlers were pushed into bowling to the top-notch batsmen of the country on a wicket that did not have the pace or carry like the one that was used on Wednesday.

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