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World Cup semi-finals: Wary of Indian supporters Michael Clarke & Co appeal Oz fans for support

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Sydney, Mar 23: It seems the amount of support Team India is getting in the ongoing World Cup 2015 has made rival Australian cricketers a bit jittery.

Michael Clarke and Co fear Australian supporters will be outnumbered by their Indian counterparts -- in their own backyard -- when Men In Yellow will lock horns with Men In Blue in the semi final match at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Thursday.

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WC: Clarke asks Aussie fans for support

To reduce the gap and get a 'psychological' home advantage against their opponents Australian skipper Michael Clarke and teammate David Warner have sent out identical tweets appealing fans to come out in big numbers to support them.

"I call on all Australian cricket lovers to paint the SCG gold on Thursday. We need your support. #goldout"

As per an AFP report, the hashtag, referring to the Australian team colours, has ironically caught the fancy of more Indian Twitter users than Australian.

Organisers believe that 70 per cent of tickets at the sold-out 42,000-capacity SCG have been bought by by India fans, threatening to create an environment reminiscent of the frenzied atmosphere of Eden Gardens in Kolkata.

If the pitch suits spinners, as has been the case at the SCG in the past, co-hosts Australia may well feel as though they have been kicked out of their own party.

However, Australian all-rounder James Faulkner insisted that spin will not play as big a role as is being predicted in the cricket World Cup semifinal.

While the quarter-final match between South Africa and Sri Lanka saw leg-spinner Imran Tahir and off-spinner JP Duminy share seven wickets among themselves, Faulkner feels that Australia won't be troubled by the lack of spin options during the clash.

Kartik Ayyalasomayajula, one of the founders of the Swami Army -- India's version of England's Barmy Army supporters group -- forecast the Australian team would be in for a hard time from fans on Thursday.

"It will be very loud, very intimidating," Kartik told the Sydney-based Daily Telegraph newspaper. "It will feel like an away game for them.

"The drummers will be going around the ground and people will be dancing, singing and cheering every run India score, every wicket they take.

"People will be going nuts."

Kartik, a Melbourne-based IT professional, said the tweets by Clarke and Warner pleading for Australian support at the match indicated how much the home team were worried.

Defending champions team India won the 2011 World Cup in Indian sub continent after defeating Ricky Ponting's Australia in the quarterfinals in Ahmedabad.

OneIndia News

(With inputs from agencies)

Story first published: Monday, March 23, 2015, 16:42 [IST]
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