‘India won’t hold on to top spot’, claims former Aussie captain

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Ian Chappel puts scorn on India’s ranking achievement

A FORMER Australian cricket captain has claimed India won’t be able to hold onto their Number 1 Test ranking slot because of their lack of “champion bowlers”.

Ian Chappel made the comments in a new audio show hosted by leading cricket website Cricinfo.

He was speaking on India’s achievement in reaching the top of the ranking table with former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar.

In replying to Manjrekar’s claim that India had been aided by the impressive opening partnership between batsmen Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir, Chappell said: “I don’t think great teams are built on opening batting partnerships. But to me, there is a far more important thing, and this is one reason why I don’t rate India as a long-term No.1.”

“I think you have got to have two champion bowlers in your line-up to be a long-term successful cricket team. That is where India is falling down at the moment,” Chappell said

“When I look at the averages and the strike-rates for India in the last 12 months, I don’t see two champion bowlers. In fact, I am struggling to find one champion bowler in that line-up. They’ve got some good bowlers. Sure, they have got a very good batting line-up, but the bowling is really not good enough to see them win consistently all around the world.”

India rose to the top of the rankings after beating Sri Lanka 2-0 in the three-Test series at home last month.

Chappel’s comments come as The Board of Control of Cricket in India confirmed the appointment of former South African fast bowler Eric Simons as the teams new bowling coach.

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