India hardened up - Donald

Allan Donald (Gallo Images)
Allan Donald (Gallo Images)
Cape Town - Proteas bowling coach Allan Donald believes India are a tougher team mentally than they were in the past when visiting South Africa.

India arrived in Johannesburg on Monday for a three-match one-day series, which will be followed by two Tests.

The series was drastically curtailed due to a myriad of administrative issues between the Indian cricket board and Cricket South Africa.

However, it is still expected to be a mouth-watering affair with India the world's leading ODI team and South Africa No 1 in the ICC Test rankings.

Indian teams in the past have always struggled on the South African wickets that offer more pace and bounce, but Donald feels the current crop is a different class.

In an interview with the DNA India website, Donald said the thing he likes most about India now is that they have "hardened up".

He said they are no longer that team that used to come here and were left intimidated by the pace and bounce of South Africa's pitches.

He said the reason for the change is in India's approach. They have a killer instinct going and a lot of young blood has changed perceptions, believes Donald.

Donald also reckons India have the ability to live without Sachin Tendulkar, who recently retired. He feels Virat Kohli - the No 1 ODI batsman in the world - will fill that void in both formats. Donald said Kohli has been "amazing" in recent times.

Donald didn't want to elaborate much on India's bowling attack but said they could pose problems if they can adapt to the conditions.

He singled out Mohammed Shami Ahmed as a guy who executes swing pretty well.

The first ODI is scheduled for the Wanderers on Thursday.
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