Chennai, Feb 15: Indian captain M S Dhoni has confirmed that Indian batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar will play in Wednesday's World Cup warm-up match against New Zealand. This will be the first time in years that the Little Master will face the Kiwis in a one-day engagement, as he was not part of the Indian squad for the home series against the Black-Caps in December 2010, nor did he play them in the tri-nation series in Sri Lanka in August last year.
Tendulkar who was rested along with speedster Zaheer Khan for India's warm-up fixture against Australia on Sunday at Bangaloore, is eager to get into the swing of things ahead of the big tournament. Sachin's last one-day match was in South Africa in the middle of last month, during which he contracted a hamptsring strain and had to return home mid-way through the one-day series.
Dhoni also refuted claims hat the team was "tired" going by their lacklustre batting display against Australia. As was the case in South Africa, India's top order collapsed yet again as India slumped to 111/5, although some gritty play from the latter order took the side to 214, which proved enough for a win.
In conclusion, Dhoni said that the up-coming scrimmage against New Zealand would be a crucial enocunter for India as they need to carry some mementum into the World Cup where they face Bangladesh at Dhaka on Feb 19.