‘India will win, but 5-0 may not be possible’: Ganguly confident ahead of Australia ODIs

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‘India will win, but 5-0 may not be possible’: Ganguly confident ahead of Australia ODIs

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SportsCafe Desk

09/14/2017

Sourav Ganguly believes that India will emerge victorious in the upcoming five-match ODI series against Australia but doubted a 5-0 whitewash against the visitors. The former Indian skipper also backed the selectors’ rotation policy, saying that it is a good move looking ahead to the 2019 World Cup.

Australia will kick off their month-long limited-overs tour of India with the first of five One-Day Internationals at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on September 17. The series will be the limited-overs leg of Australia’s tour of India in February-March where the visitors lost the highly competitive series 2-1. Although Australia have had their fair share of problems against the turning ball, their limited-overs specialists played spin a lot better, which forces Sourav Ganguly to give the visitors some chance despite declaring India as the outright winner.

“At home, India will be very tough to beat. India will win but 5-0 (like against Sri Lanka) may not be possible as Australia are a strong side,” Ganguly told PTI.

Since before the start of the five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka, Indian skipper Virat Kohli had made clear his intentions of identifying a core group of players in the lead up to the marquee event in the United Kingdom in 2019. The lack of a pattern in the batting order was evident as India experimented with different roles for different players. After wrapping up the series 3-0 in Pallekele, India made three changes in Colombo and then four in the final game. Even in the first three matches, where Indian played an unchanged eleven, batsmen and bowlers were moved around in accordance to the situation. 

The legendary Indian skipper hailed the selectors’ rotation policy, saying, “They (selectors) want to assess the youngsters. It’s a good move looking ahead to the World Cup 2019. We have enough time to prepare. Everyone will get a chance, that’s what you need in team building.”

Yuvraj was picked for the limited-overs series against England last year after the selectors were convinced of his form and fitness during the Ranji Trophy. The vote of confidence was cast after Yuvraj stacked up 672 runs in five games, including scores of 260 and 177. However, despite scoring 372 runs at an average of 41.33 with a strike-rate of 98.67 in his last 10 innings, he found himself out of the team for the Sri Lanka and the upcoming Australia series. However, Ganguly stated that if Yuvraj can work hard, he can certainly make a comeback to the team.

“Yes, yes he can make a comeback if he fights. Why not, nothing is over till it’s actually over.”

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Lasith Malinga or Bhuvneshwar Kumar? Who will take more wickets?

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