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Laxman's big Test is close at hand

Tomorrow's Adelaide Test looms as a crucial one for senior batsman VVS Laxman, who at 37 is under extreme pressure over his Test future after a miserable series in which he has scored just 102 runs at an average of 17.


VVS Laxman

Laxman reportedly batted for nearly two hours in the Adelaide Oval nets on Thursday in a desperate bid to regain his touch with indications that he will play in the final Test. The pressure is also on Virender Sehwag, who will lead India, still ranked No 2 in the world, in MS Dhoni's enforced absence.

Laxman scored a brilliant hundred here in the 2003-04 which ended up helping India go one-up in the series.
Sehwag has not lost a Test in his three matches at the helm but he is another senior batsman out of form and needs a typical buccaneering knock to galvanise his team.

Little has gone right for India -- thrashed by 122 runs in Melbourne and by an innings and 68 runs in Sydney, both inside four days, before an abysmal innings and 37-run defeat inside three days in Perth. Australia's bowlers have dominated, with swing bowler Ben Hilfenhaus taking 23 wickets in the series at 16 apiece and Peter Siddle 17 wickets at under 20.

While India's decorated batsmen have yet to score a century in the three Tests, Australia have scored four, including skipper Michael Clarke's 329 not out. "As Michael Clarke said after the game (in Perth), celebrate your win, but at the end of the day we want to try and beat the second team in the world four-nil," opener David Warner said.

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