The Indian team arrived in Hyderabad late in the night after a grueling tour of Australia. A large crowd gathered at Begumpet airport, braving the wintry chill, to accord a rousing welcome to their local hero VVS Laxman and other cricketers.
The Indian team flew in from Sydney, via Singapore, after a two-and-a-half month tour of Australia. The team had to make a detour to Hyderabad as their original plans changed after India lost the VB series finals 0-2 and did not have to play the third one in Brisbane. Hyderabad Cricket Association officials received the team, which was driven straight to Hotel Taj Krishna for night halt.
Sourav Ganguly answered newsmen's queries while other players were escorted into a bus by security personnel to reach their hotel.
On what went wrong in the finals: "We just did not play well in the finals. We could have performed much better."
On the tour: "Overall, it was a great tour for us except for the last two finals. Only towards the end, we faltered. Otherwise, we performed remarkably."
On performance of individual players: "Everyone in the team performed well. Particularly VVS Laxman, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag and myself played well. Our young bowlers Irfan Pathan and Laxmipathi Balaji bowled well. Anil Kumble was impressive."
On forthcoming series against Pakistan: "I cannot say anything now. The team has just landed."
On security for Pakistan tour: "I will talk to BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya and discuss about the security aspects. Right now, I cannot say anything else on that issue. As far as we are concerned, we do not know what is going on. All I can say is that the Board has to answer our security concerns. But the tour is definitely on."
Three players from Tamil Nadu- Hemang Badani, Murali Kartik and Laxmipathi Balaji-went to Chennai from Singapore while the other players arrived in Hyderabad. They left for their respective places-Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata-by morning flights on Tuesday.