Tri-series - Ganguly's absence baffles Ponting
Though he doesn't doubt the Indian youth brigade's potentials, the Aussie skipper says he is little baffled by the absence of Sourav Ganguly.cricket Updated: Feb 02, 2008 15:51 IST
Ricky Ponting does not doubt the potentials of the youngsters in the Indian side but the Australian skipper said he is little baffled by the absence of Sourav Ganguly in the visitors' squad.
A day before the tri-series opener, the Australian said he wanted his side to be wary of the young Indians. But at the same time, he couldn't help but express surprise at Ganguly's absence.
"As we saw in India last year, these young guys can do a good job in international level. There is also experience in the form of Sachin (Tendulkar) and (Virender) Sehwag, Yuvraj (Singh) and (Gautam) Gambhir. We would see these younger players shine at different times right through this series.
"But I am surprised that Sourav Ganguly is not in their line-up, that he is not around," he said. Ganguly has been consistent in both Test and one dayers since his return from the wilderness but India decided to leave out the former captain from its one day squad in order to blood youngsters.
Dwelling on the tri-series, Ponting felt that the hosts had gathered some momentum from the crushing win over India in the Twenty20 game in Melbourne on Friday evening.
"I know India said that they wanted to take this game as a practice match and that's fine with us. But we wanted to make a statement, we were very sharp in everything we did (in the middle) and I feel we have taken some edge over India from that game," said Ponting who declared himself to have 90 per cent recovered from his stiff back.
Ponting, however, acknowledged that India was fielding a younger side in the one-day format and they have the ability to bounce back.
"As we have seen, from Test to one-day cricket, there is a vast change and seven different players have now made up the squad. "But India have always proved capable of bouncing back and would like to start tomorrow's game well," he said.
"In Twenty20 cricket, you are sometimes caught up in the pace of the game. It was pretty much over for them once they were 4 for 20 last evening. The game was practically over.
"But that can happen in Twenty20 cricket. You would see not many international teams dominate for a long period of time, it's that kind of format."
But Ponting really liked what he saw of his team last evening at the MCG. "We tried to make a statement and were very sharp about everything. It's an exciting format of the game and that's how we approached it. "Some of the younger guys wanted to enjoy themselves in the middle," he added.