Beating opposition in its backyard is big: Gambhir

Principal Correspondent
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Gautam Gambhir.— PHOTO: R.V. MOORTHY
The Hindu Gautam Gambhir.— PHOTO: R.V. MOORTHY

India’s comprehensive 4-0 Test series win over Australia may have earned the team plenty of accolades, but for Gautam Gambhir the bigger charm lies in beating the opposition in its own backyard.

“We all want to be the No.1 team. They (Indian team) have done really well and it is a great victory. But beating the opposition in its own backyard is a big thing,” said Gambhir at a press conference to launch cricket portal here on Thursday.

Citing an example of how South Africa recorded an away-series win against Australia and went on to become the No.1 Test team in the world, Gambhir said India must record overseas Test wins in order to be considered as a strong force in world cricket.

Asked about his aspirations of leading the Indian team in future, Gambhir said, “It is an honour to captain the team. The bigger honour is to play for India, score runs and be part of the winning team in overseas tours.”

Gambhir said he was keen to doing well for the Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) team in the Indian Premier League (IPL). “A player’s job is to keep scoring runs. The selectors do their job…I am (feeling) better now and have started practising.”

No pressure

The gritty left-hander said there was no pressure on either the team or himself. “It is not pressure, it is an honour. We have the confidence of defending the title.”

Gambhir said he was aware that leading the side would have its pressure. “If I had not liked it, I would not have taken it. I am used to it…The team will share my pressure.”

The KKR skipper said the absence of Sri Lankan recruit, Sachithra Senanayake, in the Chennai match would not affect the team much.

Gambhir praised Cricklan’s initiative to begin a National School League (NSL), a Twenty20 league, in which around 80 schools from four cities – Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Bangalore – will take part. Later, the NSL will also organise two-day matches for the school kids.

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