Opening innings could be turning point: Ganguly
Published: Friday, November 16, 2001, 1:58 [IST]
Ganguly wants to lead from front
Sehwag, Hayward face-off may prove interesting
India's South African Safari
Port Elizabeth: India's captain Saurav Ganguly on Thursday said his decision to open the innings in the second Test against South Africa could be a turning point in his career."It could be the bend in my career," Ganguly said on the eve of the second cricket Test against South Africa here. Ganguly has chosen a bold and daring course to revive the team's fortunes even if it means plunging his career into crisis. With Rahul Dravid and V V S Laxman reluctant to open, Ganguly was left with little choice than shouldering this added burden. Coach John Wright admitted Dravid and Laxman were reluctant to open the innings. "I would say yes, they were reluctant," Wright said. "Though in Laxman's case it must be said he has opened in quite a few Tests and he has never been comfortable out there." The coach said Dravid had volunteered to open the innings in the Bloemfontein Test but then "you must give your best people to bat in the spots they feel comfortable... We would probably end up having more depth in out batting." Ganguly has not only given an insight into his confident frame of mind, he has also chosen to give cushion of security to two youngsters who could have also been asked to open. Ganguly does not want Virender Sehwag or Deep Dasgupta, the two debutants of the Bloemfontein Test, being thrown into the deep and said he would rather stick his own neck out against the South African pace battery which inflicted a humiliating nine- wicket defeat on his team in the first Test. "I am not afraid of short-pitched bowling, not at all," Ganguly said. "Let me tell you, I have been scoring runs on this tour..."