Ganguly not giving up

Former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly claims his exclusion from the ODI squad for the series against Pakistan this month will not signal his retirement from international cricket. The 33-year-old, who played only one Test of the recent series at Karachi, remains bullish despite losing his place to younger, and less controversial, figures.

“I will continue to play.” This statement from Ganguly may seem paradoxical, given that he is far from a regular choice in the middle order, but the man who was replaced as captain by Rahul Dravid late last year claims “I am playing well at the moment”. He moved to quash any rumours that his presence in the dressing-room was causing unrest by stating “All the boys have played under my captaincy, there is no problem. I have a good time in the dressing room.”

The issue of where in the order he might bat is another which was raised – he has indicated that, having been chosen ahead of specialist openers Wasim Jaffer and Gautam Gambhir for the Karachi Test, opening the batting is not a job which he would turn down. “I have no problems opening the innings, it’s something I have been asked to do in the past and would agree to again in the future.”

His own form was also discussed, in the interview he gave to a TV channel just before his return to India – he made 34 and 37 at Karachi, and was one of few Indian batsmen to come out of the game with any credit. Ganguly believes he batted “pretty well”, although he revealed his disappointment at getting out when he did, after two 100-run partnerships. “I got out at a crucial point in the match – my wicket could have made a big difference.”

The ODI series between Pakistan and India begins on Monday in Peshawar.

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