India may gamble with three fast bowlers

Published: Tuesday, November 18, 2003, 2:15 [IST]
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Kolkata: Having learnt their lessons from the Australian mauling in the first 15 overs, India hinted of going into the tri-series cricket final on Monday with three pacemen to plug the bowling loopholes.

India have twice conceded over 100 runs in the first 15 overs against the Australians, the last time in the tri-series match at Bangalore, and captain Sourav Ganguly does not want a repeat of that in the final at any cost. "We have to bowl well in the first 15 overs. This is an area that is in our mind. We have not bowled well against the Aussies in the initial overs in the tournament so far," Ganguly said in Kolkata on Monday.

Although the Indians are yet to finalise their playing eleven, Ganguly gave enough indication that a third speedster may be included in the team for the first time in the tri-series. "There is a good chance of India including three pace bowlers in the playing eleven," he said. The Indian skipper also brushed aside speculation over his fitness saying "there is not really any chance of me not playing the final".

Ganguly, who pulled his groin muscle during the November 15 game versus New Zealand at Hyderabad, said he was "improving every day" and was hoping to regain full fitness before the start of the match.

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