That the Champions League T20 tournament is more attuned to teams from countries other than India became clear in its inaugural season last year.
It is a fact which even Rahul Dravid acknowledges. “Yes, the other teams do have an edge as they play together regularly as a team whereas we as Indian teams assemble just ahead of the tournament. But then we have played three IPLs together and our team has settled well.”
That should help as it was in South Africa that RCB turned things around to go from number two from the bottom in the first IPL to be runners-up in the second edition last year.
“It is exciting to play the Champions League in South Africa. We were among the better sides in South African conditions as we showed during the second edition of the IPL,” said Dravid.
After all, in South African conditions, it is Dravid who can be expected to revel, holding the batting together while allowing the Ross Taylors and Robin Uthappas to go hell for leather.
Uthappa, for his part, just about returning to cricket post an operation of his shoulder, said he was confident that he would be able to play. “Yes, I am fit for the tournament,” he said.
But Dravid at least isn’t taking the tournament any lighter for it. “This time we have more time to prepare and get used to the conditions,” he started, referring to the camp scheduled to begin in Pretoria in the first week of September, before adding: “But, yes, it is the Champions League and it is a tough tournament. The Indian teams will have to adjust quicker.”