Pressure will be on Twenty-20 world champions India: Ponting
Australian Skipper Ricky Ponting told newsmen here today that after the World Cup triumph pressure would be more on India to perform in front of the home crowd. The return of three ‘big guns’ Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and Saurav Ganguly would not affect the visitors much, he added.
Ponting said ”this is a new series and we have left the Twenty-20 debacle behind. We always start a new series on an aggressive note and want to win all the matches we play. We will come back strongly and hopefully win the series,” he said.
He said the pressure would fall back on India as they had just returned triumphant from the Inaugural Twenty-20 World Cup. “There will be lot of expectation pounding on the Indian players at the moment. Coming back as World Champions and playing in India no doubt they will be under pressure,” he felt.
Ponting was confident that Aussies could face the three master batsmen better as they had seen their game for a long time.
“We have played a lot against Sachin, Saurav and Rahul and know their strengths and weakness. This might prove a little bit easy (than facing unknown quantity) to face them, I feel,” he said.
Past performance also favoured Austrlaia in the forthcoming series, Ponting adding that his country maintained a good record on Indian soil, especially in the one day version. “We always go into a series with a proper gameplan in place and we would like to take control from the first match on Saturday. Twenty-20 World Cup debacle is behind us and we want to bounce back and take control. It was unfortunate that we fell a little bit short in South Africa,” he said.
Echoing his captain’s views, Vice captain Adam Gilchrist said it will be a ‘new experience’ for India as they were now the Number one team in 20-20 cricket. “They are now in a new zone and expectations will come with it,” he said.
Asked about the momentum being with India after their win in South Africa, he agreed that such an advantage will be difficult to stop. “This is a different series and a different format of the game. Our plan is to win the first game and wrest the momentum for ourselves,” he added.