Top spin Down UnderESPN-Star in their buildup to the upcoming Indian Test series in Australia have these promos where one of the voices that can be heard is of Ian Chappell saying (paraphrased) "Probably the only team that has a chance of beating Australia is India". Which may sound extremely flattering and even downright un-Chappell-like given his recent hardhitting articles that have touched the topic, including this full-length piece on the subject.
Assuming that Chappell senior does not usually bet on the weaker side, the quote used by ESPN-Star must be probably be (a) Out of context (b) Made during the days when India was doing rather well in some of the previous one-day series (c) Because he grossly underestimates his own national side. ESPN-Star, fine channels that they may be, cannot help but add sentiment and spin to one of the biggest sporting series from the Indian point of view with the juicy prospects from the business angle. They did this last time too, and perhaps contributed in some measure to the great feeling of disgruntlement that emerged when we failed to win anything and ended up proving Mr. Lele right. Let's hope people have more realistic expectations this time. But the good news will be that though the team may not come through with victories except for a small miracle, there will be the prospect of some great commentary involving the Aussies, the Indians, perhaps even some Englishmen and if we're really lucky - No Sidhu!