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India rests Ganguly to try out other batsmen, Windies captain Lara undecided

India rests Ganguly to try out other batsmen, Windies captain Lara undecided

India will rest former skipper Sourav Ganguly from Saturday's limited-overs international to try out other batsmen with the upcoming World Cup in sight, even as the West Indies are not sure of injured captain Brian Lara turning out.
Having secured an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the four-match series, India can afford to experiment with its combination and also test the match-fitness of middle-order batsman Yuvraj Singh, who is returning two months after injuring his knee during the Champions Trophy.
Singh, seasoned leg-spinner Anil Kumble, young opener Robin Uthappa and middle-order batsman Suresh Raina are the four changes to the Indian lineup that clinched a 20-run victory in the low-scoring second one-dayer Wednesday.
Making way for them are opener Ganguly, wicket-keeper Mahendra Dhoni, pace ace Zaheer Khan and off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who played in the first two matches that India won by 14 runs and 20 runs.
Seeking to avenge their 1-4 drubbing against the West Indies during the tour to the Caribbean islands last year, India is eager to continue the winning streak that will instill confidence in the team after a disastrous recent visit to South Africa.
Skipper Rahul Dravid said the team needs to answer a few questions as the selection of the World Cup squad draws closer, but positive results remain paramount.
"Positive results matter a lot. We're playing to win, but must also give a chance to more players to get on the flight for the World Cup in the West Indies," Dravid said.
The limited-overs World Cup will be played March 13-April 20 in the Caribbean islands.
The West Indies is also using this tour to prepare for the World Cup, but skipper Lara's sore knee is causing some concern.
Lara skipped the second one-dayer to avoid aggravating the soreness in his left knee, but said he would decide about playing Saturday afternoon.
"I'll bat in the nets today, get medical treatment in the evening and tomorrow make a decision on playing," said Lara, insisting his team's morale was quite high despite narrow defeats.
"It's very important for us not to lose confidence after a couple of defeats," said Lara. "We're not just looking at the results, but at the bigger picture as this is our build up for the World Cup."
Dravid said India's turnaround from the 0-4 loss to South Africa was the result of key players coming good in pressure situations.
"There's no magic formula for victory _ it's just that the key players are doing well in crucial situations," Dravid said.
"In our plans for the World Cup, a couple of batting slots are still open and a few questions need to be answered about Yuvraj's fitness," he said.
"Yuvraj has been declared medically fit, now it's just a matter of him playing a couple of games," Dravid said. "He's too important a player not to be given a chance."
He said things were falling into place for the Indian squad.
"We're playing good cricket, won a couple of close games, and the mood in the team is good," he said.
Dravid said the team management was seeking to build a squad that could cope with different types of pitches, a talent that might come handy during the World Cup on different Caribbean islands.
Lara, too, endorsed the view that World Cup teams might encounter tracks of different type.
"Encountering different types of pitches at Indian venues will make for some good experience," Lara said.