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I am looking for a double hundred in India: Mark Waugh

Mark Waugh
Mark Waugh

Rarely in the course of cricketing history has a player as elegant and classy as Mark Waugh appeared on the scene. The wristy batsman has scored all around the world, relishing the onside to savour his appetite for runs. An excellent fielder in the slips who makes catching look like a piece of cake, he strolls across the field with that ever present smile, seldom has it turned into a frown. His deep blue sun shades became a craze on the fashion circuit in the late nineties.

The first batsman to score back to back centuries in a World Cup, he is part of a world beating team touring India, a tour that could very well go down in history if the Aussies can beat the Indians at home after 31 years. Waugh's life and playing career have been in turmoil in the recent past but he has managed to tide over a difficult period.

CricInfo met the elegant Mark Waugh at the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai.

Q: You scored a big hundred in the finals of the one-day series against the West Indies before coming to India. Do you think you have regained your best form?

A: I had a good season back in Australia not just in that game but most of the season, I was pretty consistent. I scored runs in the Tests and the one-dayers, so I am in good form but that doesn't mean I am going to make runs in India. I am going to have to bat well over here because India will be a good side, they've got good bowlers. It's a matter of just keeping focused and keeping positive.

Q: What's your opinion on the current Indian team?

A: Well I am not quite sure who is going to be in the side but I know they are going to be pretty good players. I know they have got quite a good pace bowling attack. Srinath is a good bowler, Agarkar is good and I saw a bit of that left hander in Kenya, Khan isn't it. So they have got some good pace bowling and I am sure the spinners they play will do a good job.

Q: You had a very successful World Cup here in 1996, both with the bat and the ball and you bowled well on the last tour as well. Do you enjoy the Indian conditions? How do you see the performance of the team on this tour?

A: Yes I did bowl a bit on the last tour. We haven't played here much. Most of the guys have played only two or three Test matches in their whole career here in India, so I think they are looking forward to the tour. Myself, I enjoy batting here because the wickets are pretty flat. They might turn a bit but the outfield is very quick and you get good value for runs. So I enjoy batting over here.

Q: What do you see when you look back on your career? Do you have any regrets?

A: No, I think I have had a good career. I have played over a 100 Tests and over 200 one-dayers. Of course there are times when every batsman has a low period. I think I have been pretty consistent. Probably the one thing that I haven't done is score big hundreds. I made 153, I think it's my top score. I haven't made a double hundred or too many big hundreds, that's one part of my game I'd like to fix. Hopefully it will happen on this tour.

Q: The Waugh brothers have always come good under pressure situations. Do you and Steve enjoy batting under pressure?

A: Well I don't know, I guess that's why we played over a 100 Tests because you know we can play under pressure. A lot of teams, a lot of players play well on one day but not the next. I think most of the Australians are good, tough cricketers and we play well under pressure. That's why we won 15 Tests in a row because when it's tough we can produce a good innings or a good catch or take a wicket.

Q: Who do you think is the best bowler that you have played and why?

A: I think Curtly Ambrose is the best bowler I have played just because he is so accurate and bowls fast, doesn't bowl any bad balls. He is tall, gets a lot of bounce and is very accurate.

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