Aussies raring to play big games; target Pakistan (Sidebar)

March 17th, 2011 - 4:08 am ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, March 17 (IANS) Title holder Australia has set its sights on bigger games ahead in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 and vowed to give a tough fight to Pakistan in Colombo Saturday.

“We had a great time so far playing against New Zealand and Sri Lanka earlier and minnows Kenya and Canada this week. We are looking forward to play Pakistan this weekend (March 19) as we haven’t been fully tested yet,” upbeat Australian skipper Ricky Ponting told reporters late Wednesday after a sure win over Canada by seven wickets.

With a record 34 wins in the World Cup series since 1999, the Aussies top Group A by virtue of nine points from four wins, one drawn and are assured of a place in the knock out stage later this month.

“As the wicket in Colombo is an old one, we expect the pitch to turn with lot of spin. So, we will go after the new ball to score as many and as fast before Pakistan presses its spinners into the game,” Ponting asserted at a post-matching briefing.

Admitting that its encounter with Canada was lot easier than against Kenya last Sunday (March 13), the skipper said the players were fit and had rigourous practice sessions for the crucial matches.

“Though they rattled us initially when its opener Hiral Patel went berserk and helped Canada score the fastest 50 in 4.5 overs, we were able to restrict them to 211 in 45.4 overs. Patel’s knock reminds me of Indian (dashing opener) Virendar Sehewag’s batting style,” Ponting recalled.

Asked if he was happy with the performance of twin spin bowlers Jason Krejza and Steve Smith, the Tasmanian said they did hit the deck well, the former (Jason) was able to get breakthroughs twice and bowl the stipulated 10 overs for 44 runs.

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