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India are tough to beat at home: Ponting


Mumbai: Depiste India’s recent indifferent performance, Australian captain Ricky Ponting believes that Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s team would be difficult to beat at home.

The Australian team landed here Tuesday for a seven-match One-day series starting Oct 25 in Vadodara.

Australia will be high on confidence after drubbing England 6-1 and then winning the Champions Trophy in South Africa. India failed to reach the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy.

Ponting said the younger players in the team will have to play spin better to have an impact on the series.

“India is a very good and strong one-day team and we are not underestimating them,” Ponting told reporters Wednesday.

“We are the number one and two teams in the world and it all points to an entertaining and good contest over the next few weeks,” he said.

“We have always enjoyed playing in India and against India. Our rivalry over the last few years has been growing and its good for the world game.”

Ponting said the team will have to give their best throughout the series.

“We have played some excellent one-day cricket over the last few months beginning from the England tour and in the Champions Trophy,” Ponting said. “We need to keep improving and need to be at our best right through the series.”

“We have got a lot of young players who are finding their feet in international cricket. We have played some good one-day cricket over the last few months and they have grown in confidence from that. This series offers them different set of challenges.”

Ponting said since some of the players are featuring in the ongoing Champions League Twenty20, it will help them to acclimatise.

“It’s good they have got used to the conditions but on the other hand it would have been nice to have them in the group a little bit sooner,” he said.

“The challenge will be how our middle order batsmen cope up with playing spin bowling over the next few weeks. Michael Hussey has played a lot of cricket here. Shane Watson and Tim Paine play spin well.”