Australia better prepared than 1992 World Cup: Allan Border

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Melbourne, Feb 10: Former Australian captain Allan Border believes the lessons of his side's devastating early exit from the 1992 World Cup held at home have been learned and the current squad will win the tournament.

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Border was captain of the 1992 team which was one of the pre-tournament favourites but suffered shock early losses to New Zealand and South Africa.

Australia better prepared than 1992 World Cup: Allan Border

"The lessons have been learned from the mistakes we made in 1992. We didn't prepare for that tournament well because we were playing Test cricket against India only a few weeks out," Border was quoted as saying by news.com.au Tuesday.

"We hadn't really targeted the World Cup with the right planning and the subtle tactics you need and probably didn't really even know the final makeup of our side."

New Zealand surprised their neighbours by opening the bowling with spinner Dipak Patel in the first game in Auckland and Border's side never recovered from the early loss.

Border's team watched helplessly as it was kicked out before the semi-finals, with Pakistan beating England in the final.

"Then in the tournament proper, the Kiwis hijacked us and we never got any momentum or form in the early stages. We played OK in the later part of the tournament but before we knew it, we were out of contention," the 1987 World Cup-winning captain said.

The Aussie great believes the current side won't make the same mistakes of the last time the World Cup was held on home soil. Border, who represented his nation in 273 One-Day Internationals (ODIs), expects the current team to win.

"Australia's preparation for this World Cup has been second to none. The squad has been together for quite a while now, playing a lot of one-day cricket, and we have tangled with two good one day sides in the last month or so," Border said.

"We have got our combinations sorted and who will cover for who should anything go wrong. And I am sure this team will embrace playing at home where they will get 90 per cent crowd support. I honestly believe that if we play anywhere near our best we will be very, very hard to beat."

IANS

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