Mindgames begin early | india | Hindustan Times
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Mindgames begin early

S Africa know when to hit and, more importantly, where to hit. A day before the final one-dayer, they have already started the mind games.

india Updated: Nov 28, 2005 04:11 IST

South Africa know when to hit and, more importantly, where to hit. A day before the fifth and final one-dayer at the Wankhede here, they have already started the mind games.

The Proteas, leading the series 2-1, tore into the wounds inflicted by the Sourav Ganguly demotion and Greg Chappell's finger misadventure. "The pressure is on India. They are surrounded by controversies because of whatever is happening to Ganguly and so on," South Africa’s Mark Boucher said. He added that cracks might be developing in the Indian line-up. "Whenever there is a controversy, cracks develop in teams. But they are not noticed if the team is winning, but once the team starts losing the cracks widen and become visible."

He added that cracks might be developing in the Indian line-up. "Whenever there is a controversy, cracks develop in teams. But they are not noticed if the team is winning, but once the team starts losing the cracks widen and become visible. That is why when India were winning against Sri Lanka no one noticed these cracks."

Monday's match is important for the direction the Chappell way of experimentation will take. Irfan Pathan's opening the innings in Kolkata may not have gone as planned, but he has, on a couple of occasions, come in to bat in the first five overs and done well. So it wouldn't be surprising if we see more of Pathan the opener.

With the pitch and dew being major factors, both sides would like to bat first. With Pathan and Agarkar dipping in consistency in the last few matches, it wouldn't be surprising if India decide to have a batsman as a super-sub.