India on their way to the top: Srikkanth

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> K Srikkanth said MS Dhoni and his boys are now well on course to becoming the top team in the world in both formats of the game

Updated: November 24, 2008 15:28 IST
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Basking in the glory of India's Test triumph over Australia and one-day series victory over England, chief national selector Krishnamachari Srikkanth said MS Dhoni and his boys were well on course to become the top team in the world in both formats of the game.

Srikkanth said a new face of Indian cricket has emerged with the team oozing confidence after notching up victories against top nations.

"The entire approach of the players has changed. They have been consistently aggressive and the approach has been positive. The most important thing is they are playing as a well-knit team. Everybody has done his job well and contributed for the success of the team. We are looking at building a team that will become world number one in both Test and one-day formats. That is the first goal," he said.

"The aggressive attitude reflected in the increased run rate in Test matches. There were times even in Nagpur and Mohali when things were not going our away but our boys fought their way. The fighting spirit and the adaptability is commendable. Even in the Indore one-dayer, we were 29 for three and from there to score 290 plus shows that they have adjusted to the situations well," he added.

The former India opener said what was heartening for the country's cricket was that the team was doing well collectively though there have been outstanding performers.

"If you see overall, everybody is contributing to the success of the team. It is not one individual or two. Opening batsmen Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag have found their moorings and give us solid base in Test and one-dayers. Similarly Zaheer (Khan) and Ishant Sharma have been getting us early wickets in both Test and one-dayers."

"In Test matches, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly were classy as middle-order batsmen and came up with big scores against Australia. Even against England, you see when Yuvraj Singh gets going, the opposition is lost in ideas. That way if you look at it, it is very encouraging and good for the team," he added.

Srikkanth said though the World Cup is far off, winning the showpiece event is the long term goal.

"To win the World Cup is our ultimate goal though that is still slightly far off. Because I myself have been part of the World Cup winning team.

"For now though, we will take it from series to series basis. First is England series, which we have already won but I expect them to win by a 7-0 margin. We have two Test matches. We will have to win the England Test series and then look at the Pakistan series.

The former India captain praised the Cricket Board for churning out talented players for the national team from domestic cricket.

"One thing people should realise is that the number of tournaments and the Ranji Trophy games for the youngsters in the country by BCCI. The youngsters are coming with good performances match after match. They are waiting in wings for selection in the national side and this gives you the bench strength.

"We have guys with terrific potentials both in batting and bowling. This is a transition process and I am sure the youngsters will make use of the opportunities and try establish themselves."

Himself a member of a great team of yesteryears, Srikkanth refused to compare the current lot with those from the past.

"We should not compare eras. We should accept the fact that the present team is doing extremely well."

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