| Sourav feels his boys have come on well in the last couple of years
Melbourne: India captain Sourav Ganguly said on Monday his team was capable of winning a few games during the Australian tour since it was “not hampered by a negative mindset” as was the case with the teams of the 90’s.
“It is not like the 90’s. We do not suffer from a negative mindset which hampered Indians on tour,” Sourav, who has led the side to overseas Test victories in recent times, said.
“We have actually come on well in the last two-three years.”
Although a Test series victory abroad has eluded the Indians for quite some time, Sourav was banking on his young side to “try and win games” against the world champions on this tour.
“A lot of our guys are young but they know what is expected of them... We would try to live to our expectations,” he said while conceding the players knew well the enormity of the task at hand.
“It’s tough touring Australia and winning games against the world champions but we will try. I don’t mind losing a few as long as I win a few,” Sourav, who is on his third tour to Australia, said.
The captain said his side’s goal could be achieved if the boys stay focussed and try to be aggressive — a facet which served them well at home two years ago when they beat Steve Waugh’s team 2-1 in the Test series.
“The 2001 series was great and it was achieved because we backed ourselves,” the skipper said.
Sourav was mindful of India’s poor record in Australia but took heart from the fact they have won against every other international team in the last one and a half years, barring Australia.
“We have done well against every other team in the last one and half years abroad except Australia and it means we have improved.” He also dismissed the belief that New Zealanders alone have planned to perfection how to tame Australians in their own den.
“I am not sure about that. New Zealand played three Tests in the series and a lot of those games were rain affected,” said Sourav about a series which New Zealand drew 0-0 two years ago.
The left-hander said his side had prepared well for the series and he himself benefited a lot from his six-days stint with former Australian captain Greg Chappell in Sydney a few months back.
“It was great spending those six days with Greg. He is a great character and very engaging on the craft of batting. I spent six days with him and learnt a few things which I put to good use in the Ahmedabad Test where I hit a century against the New Zealanders,” Sourav said.
‘Akram tips will help’
Sourav is looking forward to Wasim Akram to give a few tips to the Indian pacemen.
“Akram would be a sensitive selection (for the post of a bowling coach), though I would love to have him around and help our guys out,” said Sourav.
“I rate Akram as the best left-arm paceman I’ve ever seen. I know he would be around with a television network and hopefully he could offer tips. He would be useful also because we have quite a few left-arm pacemen in our squad.”