Calcutta: Speaking practically, we start as the underdogs in the tournament. It will be hard for us to qualify and people also dont expect us to make the cut.
That is what Dheeraj Jadhav, one of Assams most experienced batsmen, had to say when asked about his teams chances in the zonal round of the Vijay Hazare Trophy.
It is difficult to say whether thats a strategy of ensuring that there is less pressure on the team or if it is just a simple, honest confession.
But whatever it is, it does sound odd on the eve of a match against minnows Tripura, at the Jadavpur University, Salt Lake campus ground.
Elaborating on his statement, Dheeraj, who earlier used to play for Maharashtra, said: See, I always used to consider teams like Assam, Tripura as easy opponents when I played for Maharashtra. Although things have somewhat changed now, I still feel Assam are the underdogs
However, Dheeraj felt that the tag of the underdogs would help the youngsters in the team to put in that extra bit in the field.
The best thing about being an underdog is that you dont have any pressure, said Dheeraj.