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Be fiercely hungry: Wright

Ashish Shukla | January 01, 2004 19:18 IST

Indian coach John Wright on Thursday asked his players to be "fiercely clinical" in their approach in the series-deciding fourth cricket Test against Australia starting at Sydney on Friday.

Wright does not want India to surrender the advantage as they had done in the third Test at Melbourne and "nail situations home" for a historic series win on Australian soil.

"If we get to the situation as we did on the first day of the Melbourne Test, we got to nail those situations home," Wright told reporters during the team's practice session.

India were 278 for one at one stage on the first day of the Melbourne Test before a batting slump helped the home side wrest the initiative and level the series with an emphatic nine-wicket victory.

"We have got to be fiercely hungry to achieve and take that step further in this match. We have to be fiercely clinical," Wright said.

The coach wants his side to lift the ground fielding dramatically and the tail to contribute significantly -- the two factors primarily responsible for India's loss in the third Test.

"The lower half of the batting order has to lift. In Melbourne we lost 50 in the field and 50 by way of the tail.

"We might have a different tail in this game but the fielding has to be improved. What happened in Melbourne was appalling," he said.

India, who will be keen to register their first series win outside the sub-continent in 17 years, could go into the Test with three seamers and leg-spinner Anil Kumble.

Left-arm spinner Murali Kartik might have to sit out unless and until five bowlers are tried tomorrow at the Sydney Cricket Ground, which has a tradition of assisting slower bowlers.

It appears Ajit Agarkar will have either Irfan Pathan or Laxmipathy Balaji, or both, as his fast bowling partners in this game.

Wright praised Kumble for "he goes through the tail pretty quickly though it is the first three which needs to be taken care of."

Indian captain Sourav Ganguly too exhorted his tail to deliver and felt it was not beyond them.

"Ajit (Agarkar) has a Test century. It's a matter of belief. We have to find a way, instill a thought from number 1 to 11 that if we get in, we have to make it the best Test match of the series.

"If we don't turn up to win this Test, we would lose. We really have to play well to beat Australia in Australia."

Ganguly did not want to interfere in the way opener Virender Sehwag bats -- swashbuckling and occasionally with carelessness.

"Honestly, I haven't stopped him from doing what he wants to do. There is a thin line about the carelessness and the way you play. There is no reason for him to stop when he has done so well for us."


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