The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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India, Pak Shastri’s choice

Kochi: Australia without Steve Waugh cannot be termed favourites while unpredictable India and Pakistan can steal the thunder once into the Super Six stage, cricketer-turned-commentator Ravi Shastri said here on Thursday.

“India and Pakistan are crack teams and if they start off well and reach the Super Sixes, they can beat any team in the world on a given day,” Shastri said.

Shastri, who was here in connection with the ESPN School Quiz programme, said, “The reason why Australia cannot be termed favourites is because Steve Waugh is missing.”

The former allrounder said the contract issue would hot up after the Cup. “I think it is not going to be swept under the carpet. It is not going to die a natural death.” But he said the players did not seem to be bothered about the issue any longer.

Shastri said his advice to the Indian squad is that they should stay focussed on the task ahead. “You have 10 days in Durban. Just stay focussed and the important thing is to have self -belief and dream of winning the Cup.”

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