Perth, Mar 5: West Indies great Vivian Richards has called Mahendra Singh Dhoni's side a "powerful force" but still feels that India will have trouble defending their cricket World Cup title due to their "inconsistent" bowling. (I like challenging attacking players like Gayle: R Ashwin)
"India is a powerful force at this point in time with three wins out of three matches. Its batting is always its strong point and it is looking good. Its bowling is looking good too, as good as anything we have seen so far from them on this long tour.
"But even then, it is not consistent enough and sooner or later, that factor will come to play. That is an open chance for any opposition team to pounce on," Viv was quoted as saying in his ICC column.
India have had a smooth sail till now but the road ahead is only going to get tougher as they face a maverick West Indies at the WACA tomorrow. Viv said India's campaign may hit a rough patch soon.
"It is not to undermine what India has achieved in this tournament so far with three back-to-back wins, especially since its tour of Australia didn't go so well. To be honest, it has really been a long tour Down Under for this side.
"Its recent results have been good, but overall it has been inconsistent at best despite an abundance of talent in its squad. For this reason alone, I think it will have trouble defending its title," Viv said.
Chris Gayle has already showed his might with a brilliant 215 against Zimbabwe and Viv feels that the West Indies batsmen have it in them to take on the Indian bowlers.
"I think the West Indies' batting order is talented enough to take a chance against such a traditionally inconsistent India bowling attack. While India is comfortably placed in Pool B, West Indies has to make up points for qualification to the next round.
"However, this is not a must-win game for it by any means. In fact, I don't want it to think like that, because it will only put undue pressure on it," said Viv.