I fancy our chances against Pak - Ganguly

Written by: Saurav Ganguly
Published: Friday, June 2, 2000, 0:00 [IST]
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Dhaka: It was disappointing to lose to Sri Lanka on Thursday. We have had the better of the exchanges against them in the recent past, including that fabulous victory in the 1999 World Cup.

However, I don't want to take anything away from their superb effort. They have regrouped well after the World Cup and are again gelling well as a unit, a fact borne by their commendable victory over Pakistan in Pakistan, both in Tests as well as One-day internationals.

Losing the toss was vital. I have now lost 10 out 11 tosses since taking over from Sachin as captain. We also went into this match a trifle tired. The match against Bangladesh took two days to finish and we ended up playing on three consecutive days.

In conditions as hot and humid as these, it is not easy. I am not trying to make excuses for our poor show. I firmly believe professional cricketers have to take these things in their stride.

I was reasonably happy with the start we had. Restricting Sri Lanka to 60-odd for one in the first 15 overs wasn't a bad show, especially with Sanath Jayasuriya at the crease. And what an innings he played.

We knew if we could get Aravinda and Jayasuriya early, we could gain the upper hand as their middle-order is pretty inexperienced. We succeeded only partially.

Aravinda went cheaply, but we saw a new Jayasuriya. We are used to seeing Jaysuriya going bang-bang from the start. But here he was nudging the ball into the gaps, rotating the strike and still scoring at will.

His run-a-ball century put Sri Lanka on top. With 160-odd on the board for the loss of just one wicket in the 30th over, I felt unless we picked up a few wickets soon we would be chasing a total well in excess of 300.

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