ICC World Cup 2015: Perfect chance to raise our game

Editor Sportzwiki / 14 February 2015

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni on Saturday urged his team to forget their losing streak in Australia as they prepared for a World Cup opener against arch-rivals Pakistan.

You have to forget what’s happened in the Aus tour so far. If you carry the baggage then it will be tough to perform. The break in the middle has helped us to refresh. Also, it is the World Cup and that will ensure players lift their game. This is a perfect choice to raise our game, Dhoni said in the press confrence ahead of the India vs Pakistan clash.

Dhoni said that Sunday’s high-voltage clash against Pakistan, which he described as a “prized game” on the cricket calendar, was an opportunity for players to transform themselves from zeroes to heroes.

There is of course more intensity when we play Pakistan because the game is followed by so many fans. But I see it as a good platform for the team to perform. We need to forget the past and try not to make the same mistakes. It’s been a long summer but the positive thing is that we have got used to the conditions. The boys are looking good. I can also proudly announce that all 15 are fit and available for selection — unless something happens between now and tomorrow. I don’t need to calm nerves ahead of the key encounter. My players are used to appearing before huge crowds in the Indian Premier League and during other high-profile home games, Dhoni said when he was asked about the sell-out crowd of 47,000 at Adelaide Oval and millions of passionate fans across the world will follow the match.

He also said that it all depends on how the team plays on that particular day and also added that he is not bothered about the record his side has against Pakistan in the World Cups.

“All I know is that I am asked a lot of questions about the record. Look, I am not bothered about statistics because what happened in the past will count for little in what is a prized game for all. It’s nice for fans and the media to talk about it, but for us the only thing that will matter is how we play. The important thing is to plan well and execute those plans well. I don’t know if it will be an even contest. It is hard to predict such things.”

He also played down the experiance factor as only four players includes Virat Kohli, Suresh Raina, R Ashwin and Dhoni himself from the winning combination four years ago. He said There have been a lot of changes in the last four years. But the current team has played together for a long time and knows what is needed in pressure situations.

Dhoni also suggested that Ravindra Jadeja ahead of Akshar Patel because of the former’s batting abilities and International exposure.

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