India in Pakistan 2005-06 January 10, 2006

Indian camp remains tightlipped over team composition


Sourav Ganguly's inclusion in the lineup is uncertain © Getty Images
Rahul Dravid, the Indian captain, dodged a question whether Sourav Ganguly's name would be in the team list he would exchange with Inzamam-ul-Haq before the two players go out for the toss in the first Test starting at Lahore on Friday.

Dravid told reporters, "We haven't thought yet about the playing eleven. At present all the squad members are up for selection. We would wait till we see the wicket and then decide on the matter."

Greg Chappell, the coach, refused to comment on who would open the Indian innings but said it was a pleasant dilemma. He said, "We have three very good openers and it's unfortunate one of them would have to be left out. But that's a welcome sign. It's always better to have a dilemma on who to leave out rather than who to include."

Zaheer Khan, Wasim Jaffer and Parthiv Patel, all of whom are staging comebacks, hoped they would do well if given a chance."I plan to contribute to the team's success whether I'm playing or not," said Zaheer, who was ignored for the three home Tests against Sri Lanka and 12 ODIs before being named in the touring party.

Jaffer, who last played for India in 2002, said, "I am happy to be part of the team. Hopefully I can play a part." Parthiv Patel also expressed his happiness to be back and said, "When I get an opportunity I will look towards making the most of it."

Anil Kumble expressed happiness at being back in Pakistan for another series and felt his counterpart in the rival team, Danish Kaneria was a much improved bowler now. Kumble dismissed the suggestion that the weather in Lahore might be a deterrent. "I have bowled in cold conditions in the past and after 15 years of international cricket, I don't think it will be a handicap," he said.