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We want to continue winning momentum, says Kirsten

cricket Updated: Aug 27, 2009 20:16 IST
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Coach Gary Kirsten on Thursday said that the Indian team was playing with renewed unity and spirit to keep the momentum going after its consistent performance in one-dayers over last eight months.

"...one-day team has got a virtually 80 per cent win ratio in the last eight months. We take pride in our consistency and our performances over a period of time. So, we like to continue that," Kirsten said.

"One of the things we have taken pride in is the fact that we are playing as a team for a big cause -- that's for Team India -- over a period of success, we have had since the time in Australia last year. We take a lot of pride in being able to do that," he added.

The former South African opener sought to downplay the debacle in the Twenty20 World Cup, saying "setback at Twenty20 World Cup could happen to any worldclass team".

"We are looking ahead and looking forward (to) what we can achieve," Kirsten said on the sidelines of the first day of the four-day camp for India ahead of the tri-series in Sri Lanka and Champions Trophy in South Africa.

To a query on difficulties faced by some players facing short-pitch deliveries, the coach said "I don't see that as a problem".

Kirsten said all the players, including youngesters, have been playing exceptionally well in one-day games.

Kirsten said Rahul Dravid's return to the one-day team (after a gap of nearly two years) would add "massive value" to the side, and described the Bangalorean as a "natural performer".

"It's good to have him back. He (Dravid) is a very experienced player and he will add massive value to the team. He has a lot of value to add in terms of his experience."

On his expectations from Dravid, Kirsten said he wanted the player to give 100 per cent but hastened to add Dravid "does gives his 100 per cent whenever he plays for Team India.

"There is no pressure on individuals and we certainly don't put pressure on individuals to perform on any given day," he said, adding, if the players know what they need to do after training and preparations, that gives them best chance of success.

Kirsten said it's good to have Sachin Tendulkar and Dravid back in the team as they are quality players with lot of experience which would hugely benefit the squad.