The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Azad all praise for Sourav’s team

Calcutta: The Indians are having a good time and the momentum might just carry them through to World Cup triumph, national selector and a member of the 1983 World Cup-winning team, Kirti Azad, said Thursday.

“It is the confidence that is important for success at the highest level. And I think this team has that in full,” Azad said in an informal chat with scribes at the Eden Gardens.

He feels a standout feature of this Indian team is its hunger for success.

Asked to compare the 1983 squad with the current one, the former all-rounder said this team is ahead on the number of stalwarts.

“We had only two greats (Sunil Gavaskar and Kapil Dev), the others being mediocre all-rounders. But this team has four to five at their disposal.”

Asked whether India are playing the so-called softer sides currently, Azad snapped: “Winning is a habit and it’s not important against whom you are winning.”

He was all praise for the present Indian captain. “I really like Sourav Ganguly’s aggressive attitude. During my playing days, I was criticised for being arrogant, but at the end of the day performance matters.”

Quizzed about the chances of India and Pakistan playing each other in the near future, the MP said: “I don’t think they should play in the present situation. Cricket has been unable to cement the relationship between the two nations.”

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