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Pakistan vs Sri Lanka | This is the Best Batting Line-up We Can Produce: Karunaratne

Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne emphasised the importance of the win against Afghanistan and hoped his side would carry the momentum against Pakistan

Cricketnext Staff |June 6, 2019, 9:41 PM IST
Pakistan vs Sri Lanka | This is the Best Batting Line-up We Can Produce: Karunaratne

Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne emphasised the importance of the win against Afghanistan and hoped his side would carry the momentum against Pakistan when the two sides face off in Bristol on Friday (June 7).

"We just needed a win -- it always gives us the confidence if you get a win,  with any team, that is what we want," said Karunaratne on the importance of Sri Lanka's win over Afghanistan. "Finally, we got that. We did really good things in that particular match.

"Pakistan is an unpredictable team, but I think we also come into this game with a bit of confidence so we will be trying to give our best shot."

Kusal Perera opened the batting for Sri Lanka alongside Karunaratne in the game against Afghanistan, a change from the first game where Lahiru Thirimanne had come in at the start. The move paid dividends with Kusal slamming 78 and laying a solid foundation.

Karunaratne said that he was happy with the batting lineup from the last game and that Sri Lanka will go with the same order against Pakistan as well.

"The change in the batting line-up (from the New Zealand game)  was because I wanted to make sure we got a good start," the captain said. "I know Kusal, what he can do because I have played a lot with him. So that is why I wanted to give him a chance to go for it and give him license and then if someone gets out, Thirimanne can go there and play the anchor role.

"So those are the plans. But I think we don't want to change many things, I think this is our best batting line-up we can produce."

Sri Lanka have never beaten Pakistan in a World Cup game and will have to rewrite record books if they are to do it this time around. It won't be easy though as Pakistan are coming off a stunning win over hosts and tournament favourites England in their last game.

While Karunaratne admitted Pakistan will be high on confidence, he insisted whichever team does the basics right on the day, will emerge victorious.

"If you can play well on that particular day, you can be on the winning side. I think Pakistan did really well against England. They put a big score on the board, and after that, they kept taking wickets. Those are the key areas," Karunaratne noted.

"If you are playing any big team, you have to do the same thing, you have to put some runs on the board and give a chance for the bowlers to take wickets. I think Pakistan, or whatever the team, you have to do the basic things if you want to win it."

Despite Sri Lanka's modest record against Pakistan in World Cups, Karunaratne was certain his side had the pedigree to defeat the Men in green.

"I saw a good team spirit in the game against Afghanistan and the fielding unit and the bowling unit did a good job. Now the batting line-up has to put their hands up and do the job.," Karunaratne quipped.

"If we can put a good total on this wicket, this is a good flat wicket, and if you take the past matches, everyone's scoring more than 300 runs. If you can put 300, our bowlers can defend it, I'm pretty sure of that."

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3 England 4366 104
4 South Africa 3177 102
5 Australia 3270 99
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1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
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2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
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