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Last Updated:  Sunday, 16 March, 2003, 11:13 GMT
Ganguly dreams of ultimate prize
Sourav Ganguly
Ganguly has captained India for three years
When it comes to high-pressure jobs, Sourav Ganguly's is about as tough as they come.

Ganguly says he has "grown old" during a rollercoaster three years as captain of the world's most cricket-crazy nation.

But the man they call the Prince of Calcutta insists he would not swap anything for the chance to lead India to World Cup glory.

"I've been all around the world and my life's dream is to be in a World Cup final," Ganguly told BBC Radio Five Live's Sportsweek as he prepared for Thursday's semi-final against Kenya.

"Qualifying for the semi-finals has brought me and the whole team one step closer and it's a huge honour.

"Getting into the final would be a huge, huge thing.

Every job has a time frame, and being captain of India definitely does

"But I don't want to dream because we have not yet achieved it and I don't want to get disappointed."

Ganguly has vivid memories of the street celebrations which followed India's World Cup triumph in 1983.

And he knows that the jubilant fans who surrounded his house in Calcutta after the recent victory over bitter rivals Pakistan will return in their thousands if India lift the cup again.

"I believe a couple of thousand people gathered outside my house [after the Pakistan game] and they wanted my dad to treat them to sweets," said Ganguly.

"My daughter was pretty amazed because they were chanting my name and congratulating the team as she was up on the balcony.

"Every time I call her on the phone she just keeps shouting 'Sourav, Sourav' and I have to keep reminding her that she should call me Dad."

Ganguly has often been accused of being aloof and even arrogant for the way he goes about his duties with India.

But he revealed that he likes the simple life when he is not playing cricket - and cannot imagine living anywhere else than Calcutta when his career is over.

"I'm the sort of person who loves staying in, and after a hard day of cricket I like to take the next day easy," he said.

"I love watching cricket on television. I find that very relaxing.

"I'll have a late breakfast then go outside and chat with my friends about anything except cricket.

If we don't qualify for the final it will be a big disappointment for me

"I love lying on the bed watching cricket on TV and relaxing."

Ganguly admits, however, that life can be tough being the focal point for the hopes of an entire nation.

And the 30-year-old hinted that his tenure as captain was unlikely to last long into the future.

"I've been captain for three years and I've grown old, lost hair and greyed," he said.

"I don't think it's a job you can do for long. Every job has a time frame, and being captain of India definitely has a time frame."

He added: "It can be very hard on a captain if the team is not doing well, but we've played some good cricket since I have been captain.

"We've had some downs but quite a few highs. If we don't qualify for the final it will be a big disappointment for me."

Have Your Say on India
04 Jan 03 |  Have Your Say

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