The Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) current president Sourav Ganguly has been one of the more successful captains in the history of Indian cricket. Under Ganguly’s leadership, India won Test series against top teams of his time at home and away as well and went on to reach the final of the 2003 World Cup.
Recently, Ganguly expressed his views on various topics during a conversation with India batsman Mayank Agarwal on the latest episode of Open Nets with Mayank.
Mayank asked Ganguly to pick five cricketers from the current Test side to his team. Ganguly, in his response, named Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammad Shami and R Ashwin. Apart from these five, he also picked Ravindra Jadeja.
“In your current team, I would have loved to had Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma in the side. I would not pick you (Mayank) as I had Virender Sehwag. I’ll go for Bumrah as I had Zaheer at the other end. I would also go for Mohammad Shami after Javagal Srinath retired. I had Harbhajan and Anil Kumble in my side, so Ashwin would be my third spinner,” he said.
Mayank also asked the former captain to pick three cricketers from India’s World Cup 2019 squad that he would liked to have in his World Cup 2003 team. Replying to the question, Ganguly named Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah.
In this interview, Ganguly also talked about why he used to come late for the toss in the 2001 India – Australia Test series. He said it was an accident as he left his blazer in the dressing room. He revealed that he was nervous as it was his first big series as captain, adding he realised that then Australian captain Steve Waugh reacted to it.
“It was working on them, working on the team, and how they went about their jobs. They were a bit grumpy with all that and it worked for us as we won the series 2-1,” Ganguly said.
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It was the first time the players mixed with their teammates on the ground after being allowed to run in the gymnasium and the main playing field at different time slots on completion of the third day of their hard quarantine in the UK.
Vengsarkar, a veteran of 116 Tests, said that Kohli and Rohit are in very good form, but lack of competitive time in the middle might affect their performance at least in the tour-opening WTC final.
Yuvraj said India have a stronger batting line-up compared to the Kane Williamson-led Black Caps.