Indian team undergo training, but avoids media

Updated: Mar 18, 2011, 18:07 PM IST

Chennai: The Indian team underwent three hours of training highlighted by Sachin Tendulkar`s lengthy session with the bat, facing throw-downs and local spinners, here on Friday when a scheduled media conference was cancelled.

The Indians are preparing for their concluding World Cup Group B league fixture Sunday against the West Indies.

As usual, Tendulkar was the cynosure as he batted for an hour, playing throw-downs by coach Gary Kirsten and team-mate Virat Kohli, followed by an extended net session facing a bunch of local spinners.

The team went through the routine of fielding drills and a bout of football while a media posse was left stranded following the cancellation of a press conference scheduled for 1 p.m.

The Indian team has been in the city since Monday, arriving in batches and individually, but thus far, there has been no official interaction with the media.

There was no explanation given for the cancellation of Friday`s conference, but the buzz was that the reports in a section of the media regarding a "heated exchange" Thursday between skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni and chairman of national selectors Krishnamachari Srikkanth in the presence of BCCI secretary N Srinivasan was the reason.

The reports claimed that Dhoni and Srikkanth exchanged "harsh words" while apparently discussing the issue of the playing eleven with specific reference to inclusion of off-spinner R Ashwin.

The BCCI, in a press release Friday, rubbished the stories, dubbing them "baseless" and that the so-called meeting did not take place at all.

In the recent days, there have been reports questioning Ashwin`s non-inclusion in the playing eleven and Dhoni persisting with leg-spinner Piyush Chawla who has taken just four wickets in the three matches he has played.

Chawla had 2 for 71 in 10 overs in the tied match with England and two for 47, also in 10 overs against the Netherlands while he went wicketless conceding 56 runs in the eight overs he bowled against Ireland.

IANS