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|Entire Indian team will tour Pakistan: Ganguly|
Wednesday, February 18 2004 20:24 Hrs (IST)
"We are still concerned about security, but the Government is looking after it. We hope there will be tight security," Ganguly said adding, "everybody will be going".
"All the team members are physically and mentally fit," Ganguly told reporters at the state secretariat where he had gone to meet Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharjee to discuss the setting up of a cricket academy in the metropolis.
He said the entire team would be going to Pakistan with the exception being Harbhajan Singh, who is yet to recover completely from a finger injury. When the Indian skipper's attention was drawn to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) stand that no player will be forced to go on the tour he said, "this is normal procedure and happens before every tour."
Ganguly, however, said that he was not aware of the report of the three-member BCCI team, which recently toured Pakistan to assess the security arrangements at all the venues.
Ganguly expressed confidence that the Indian team would return victorious from Pakistan in view of its recent performance in Australia.
"We played very well in the series against Australia. Considering the fact that Australia is the world's number one team, even if we play 60 per cent of our game, we will win the Pakistan series," Ganguly said.
The Indian team is scheduled to leave for Pakistan in the first week of March. The BCCI was expected to announce the itinerary of the series later this week.
Ganguly discussed with the Chief Minister the details of his proposed cricket academy in the metropolis for which the state Government will provide the infrastructure. Ganguly also handed over a cheque of over Rs 70 lakh to the Chief Minister which he had raised opening a paediatric care intensive unit at the Dr B C Roy Memorial Hospital for Children.
Zaheer, Nehra recover well ahead of Pak tour