Bangalore: Though India would be starting out as overwhelming favourites to beat Indonesia in the Davis Cup tie next weekend at the KSLTA Stadium here, the home team's coach Zeeshan Ali asserted there is no room for complacency. "Sure, we have an all-win (5-0) record against them but we will not take this tie lightly as it is a 'must win' match for us after the loss to South Korea in February," said Zeeshan Ali here.
The former Davis Cupper blamed the defeat to Korea on India's inability to field a full-strength team. "It was a missed opportunity and we could have won that tie with full team and later in October, we could have taken Japan on home courts, but I am glad all the boys are back and are keen to put on a good show."
Zeeshan said the Indian team was yet to finalise the doubles combination, essentially who will partner veteran Leander Paes. "Either it could be Leander with Yuki Bhambri or Leander and Sanam Singh. We will name the team before the tie," Ali said. The coach said the team would practice everyday from Monday, from 3 p.m., and get used to conditions under lights later in the day. Incidentally, the singles matches are scheduled for a 3 p.m. start on the first and third day of the tie.
File photo of Leander Paes
The two practice players, Ramanathan Ram Kumar and Arjun Khade, arrived Saturday along with the reserve players Vijayant Malik and Sriram Balaji. Non-playing captain S.P. Misra also arrived in the city in the evening. The main team members Somdev Devvaraman, Yuki Bhambri and Sanam Singh are expected to arrive Sunday night while Paes, who has reached Mumbai, plans to spend Easter Sunday at home and arrive in Bangalore Monday.
The Indonesian squad is slated to arrive Monday night. Meanwhile KSLTA stadium is being spruced up for the tie and there was also training on for kids who have volunteered to be ball kids for the tie.