India can win World Cup, says Sachin Tendulkar

Updated on Sep 28, 2002 01:47 PM IST

Sachin Tendulkar feels India have both the talent and desire to win next year's World Cup in South Africa.

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PTI | ByReuters, Colombo

Sachin Tendulkar feels India have both the talent and desire to win next year's World Cup in South Africa.

Asked the question, he responded: "Yes, our side is very strong, very talented. It is also very hungry, that is the key."

As India prepared for the Champions Trophy final, he told reporters on Friday: "This side is producing good results. The World Cup is still five months away. So it is important we continue to retain form up to the event and throughout the World Cup."

The 29-year-old said it would be a huge advantage that most of the players had already played on bouncy South African pitches.

India have recently won a one-day series in West Indies as well as a tri-series in England coming into the Champions Trophy, mainly due to the batting of their younger players and their improved fielding.

The team is aiming for its maiden title after losing to New Zealand in the final in Nairobi two years ago. On Sunday they will play either world champions Australia or Sri Lanka.

CAUTIOUS PLAY



In Nairobi, India had upset Australia and South Africa before all-rounder Chris Cairns braved a knee injury to hit an unbeaten 102 to lift the Kiwis to victory.

"In Nairobi we put up a good total, but Cairns batted really well, played big shots,"

Tendulkar said. "We've got to stick to our basics. It is going to be a pressure game."

India's progress in Colombo has been marked in particular by the feats of young batting trio Virender Sehwag, Mohammad Kaif and Yuvraj Singh, the last two also contributing through their athletic fielding.

Tendulkar played down comments by former West Indian batting great Vivian Richards that India would be drastically weakened without him.

"I would say the whole team is playing well. Individuals matter but only to an extent. It's eventually a team sport," he said.

A victory in the Champions Trophy would be India's third major success, after the 1983 World Cup and the world series in Australia two years later.  

    

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