Rameez Raja

Rameez Raja feels there is lesser politics in cricket in India Getty Images

Ahmedabad: Nov 20, 2012

Former Pakistan skipper Ramiz Raja, who believes that India can beat England 4-0, spoke about the pressure of beating India in their own backyard in an interview with DNA.

When asked why it was so tough to get the better of India on their home soil, Rameez spoke of the balance in bowling that the team has attained in the recent past. The team always had a strong batting line-up but he says that he sees a positive change in the bowling department and specially the growth of pacer like Umesh Yadav, who he believes, symbolizes the change in Indian cricket.

Talking in praise of skipper M.S.Dhoni, Rameez spoke of the smooth transition that has taken place in the Indian side, with youngsters filling in for the ageing stars. He feels that good captaincy coupled with some good bowling combinations have helped the side do well in the recent past. The IPL, he says, has also been a great platform for the youngsters to perform at an International stage.

Rameez gives due credit to the domestic structure in India for such a smooth transition and believes that there is enough desire and money in the sport in the country. He also truly believes that the right talent is being picked at all times and that there definitely is less politics at the grass root level.

Praising the Motera double centurion Cheteshwar Pujara, he said that Pujara was a serious talent at No. 3, taking the spot left vacant by the legendary Rahul Dravid.

On the controversial topic of India s habit of preparing turning tracks, Rameez felt there is surely a need to prepare pitches that suit the home side and says that those who score a lot of runs in the sub-continental conditions end up becoming World class players.

On the topic of India s strategy of starving England of quality spin in the warm-up games, Rameez said it was not a strategy as he felt that there was enough IPL now to expose Indian cricket to the English cricketers.

When asked about how he sees the current series panning out, he said, given Indian conditions, England s selection lacked wisdom when they didn t pick Monty Panesar. He also felt that England were far too defensive in the field. He feels England s inability to play sub-continent style of cricket is the reason why they are behind at the moment.

Talking about the resumption of cricketing ties between India and Pakistan, Rameez said that it was fantastic that the ties were being resumed and felt that cricket sees no borders. He also said that there are a lot of fans of Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag in Pakistan and concluded by saying it was surely going to be a great series.