Pakistan geared up for big clash against Sri Lanka

February 25th, 2011 - 6:26 pm ICT by IANS  

Kumar Sangakkara Colombo, Feb 25 (IANS) Pakistan are hoping to keep their unblemished World Cup record against Sri Lanka intact when the two sides clash in a crucial Group A match at the R. Premadasa Stadium here Saturday.The Pakistanis have won all their six World Cup matches against Sri Lanka and believe that they have a good chance of making it seven in a row after hammering Kenya by 205 runs in Hambantota Wednesday.

Waqar Younis, the Pakistan coach, fired a warning to Sri Lanka Friday saying his side would go all out to capitalise on the momentum to tame the co-hosts.

“It’s an important game for both the teams,” said the former Pakistan Test pacer, adding that the match’s outcome can impact on the quarterfinal line-up.

“Sri Lanka no doubt are a very strong team especially on home soil. They are better suited to the conditions and the weather here,” said Waqar.

“But the way we have played gives us confidence. The momentum is with us. We just have to make sure that we don’t repeat our mistakes. We can’t afford to lose early wickets.”

Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara said his side was fully aware of the threat posed by Pakistan.

“I think Pakistan is a great side, they have got great balance, they’ve got match winning cricketers, not just one but quite a lot of them. So any opposition is wary of them. We are not going to take anything lightly or for granted. We are just going to go out there do the best what we can do and hope that’s enough,” said Sangakkara.

Pakistan were planning to field the same XI that helped them to a big win over Kenya. Sri Lanka will decide their line-up after receiving news from their physio on fast bowler Lasith Malinga, who missed their game against Canada because of a back strain.

“We are just making sure that he is 100 percent before we start playing him because we have a long World Cup campaign, I’m sure he is pretty fit for this one. Hopefully if the physio clears him, we can have him on the park tomorrow,” said Sangakkara.

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