I consider myself fortunate to have played in four editions of the World Cup, and with reasonable success. During my first WC in Australia in 1992, I wasn't clear about my role, and while losing did hurt, it was more about oneself and performance than the team.
Once you've played more cricket, you can come to terms with the pressure of expectations and of the necessity to deliver for the team. We came quite close in 1996 before losing in the semis and went even closer in 2003 when we reached the final.
India go into this World Cup as favourites but it will all boil down to the quality of cricket we play during the tournament. The experience is huge - Sachin Tendulkar is playing his sixth World Cup, Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag and Yuvraj Singh are playing their third World Cup and Ashish Nehra played with us in 2003.
Recent history shows that we have won a lot of matches overseas and that confidence will serve the team well over the next six weeks. Everything points to an India triumph but we must not lose sight of the fact that no favourite has gone on to win the World Cup apart from Australia, and only one co-host, Sri Lanka, went all the way, in 1996. If we win on home soil, it will be the biggest event in the history of Indian sport. Hawkeye Communications