We would love to have best of three finals: Ganguly

Published: Sunday, July 7, 2002, 20:10 [IST]
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Birmingham: Indian skipper Saurav Ganguly has advocated a best of three finals to decide a tournament involving three or more teams to give 'a fair chance' to both the finalists.

We would love to have a best of three finals as it happens in Australia as it gives a fair chance to both the teams," Ganguly said on Saturday after India sealed a berth into the final of the Natwest triangular One-day series with a four-wicket win against Sri Lanka. "It is going to be anybody's game (in a one-off final), as it happens in One-day cricket, because you don't have time to get back," he said.

Ganguly had no problems with the scheduling of the tournament, however, which has seen India play back to back matches and would be reaching London for the final only on the eve of the match after completing its day-night game against Sri Lanka at Bristol on Thursday. "There is no point in complaining. It is not the first time it has happened. We played before like this in South Africa also," he said. Ganguly agreed that it was probably the first time that the team was doing consistently well abroad but refused to speculate on whether it was the best One-day side he had been involved with.

"This is probably the first time we have won abroad so consistently. But I don't want to compare with different sides," he said. India has chased thrice in this tournament and won on all occasions, thus silencing criticism that it is poor a chaser in One-day cricket. "It was probably the reason we were looking to bat deep. It was one of the reasons for Tendulkar coming at number four and Dravid at five," Ganguly said. "It has worked well so far but it is too early to pass a judgement.

You have to judge over a period of time, not in two-three games." Ganguly was extremely satisfied with the performance of his bowlers but insisted that England still had not seen the best of left-arm seamer Zaheer Khan yet. "He has bowled well in patches but I think we haven't seen his best. I hope he turns the tournament around at Lord's next week," he said. And even though the team was brimming with talent, Ganguly said the door to the national squad was not closed to outstanding youngsters. "If someone is very special, he would get a chance. But boys (in the team) are settling down well."

The Indian skipper did not agree to the suggestion that the absence of off spinner Muthiah Muralitharan had affected Sri Lanka's campaign in the series in which the islanders have lost all four of their matches so far. "The last time they played in 1999, they had Murali but they didn't do too well. I think in these conditions, a lot depends on your fast bowlers, though on this wicket probably he (Muralitharan) would have been handy," Ganguly said.

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