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Aussies won't train to take rest on India tour

Published: Tuesday, July 20, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
 
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Sydney:Australia's cricketers, facing a playing schedule of four Tests in 33 days on their tour of India in October, may skip training to rest in between the Tests, team management said.

Given all four Tests against India in Australia last summer went to a fifth day and with hot weather expected, Australia's coaching staff plan to give Ricky Ponting's team as many rest days as possible.

"It's certainly something we're conscious of," assistant coach Tim Nielsen said on Tuesday.

"We've got to be really careful on how we keep the guys both physically and mentally fresh for the whole tour."

Staff will plan between-match days in advance, aided by a few travel days in between venues.

There could also be a back-up for wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist as the schedule makes it difficult to fly in reserves if injury strikes.

"That will be the key criteria for selection -- that you are 100 percent fit," Nielsen said.

Nielsen said recent visits to India -- in 2001 (Tests) and last year (ODIs) -- would also aid Australia in its quest to win a series there for the first time since 1969-70.

"A lot of the guys who make up the core part of the team have been there before so they know what to expect," he said.

The tour starts with a three-day match against the Indian Board President's XI, beginning September 30.

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