Mark looks for runs against Pak to keep Test spot

Published: Monday, September 30, 2002, 17:22 [IST]
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Sydney: Veteran batsman Mark Waugh has conceded he needs to start scoring some centuries if he is to hold on to his cherished place in the Australian Test team.

The 37-year-old senior batsman is under pressure to hold on to his place in the Test side after he and his twin brother, Steve, were dropped from the national one-day squad this year. "Yeah, I think I need runs," Waugh told an Australian agency in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on Monday ahead of Australia's first Test against Pakistan that begins there this week. "Last summer I made a lot of 30s and 40s and realistically I need to make 100s or 70s and 80s so, yeah, I think I've got to make some runs. "But I'm not putting any more pressure on myself than normal, I'm just going to go out there and enjoy it and whatever happens, happens." The series against Pakistan, which is being played in Sri Lanka and Sharjah because of security fears in Pakistan, precedes a five-Test Ashes series with England at home starting in November. Waugh said he had felt some pressure over the past couple of years, but will try to avoid negative thoughts before the Pakistan Test series, which starts on Thursday. "Before the game is when you've got time to think, especially in a place like this where there's not a lot a do - you just try to have think positively," he said. Working against Waugh in his quest for runs is his poor scoring record in Sri Lanka. He has played six Tests in Sri Lanka for a total of 90 runs at an average of nine. "It just hasn't worked out for some reason. I think I'm a pretty good player of spin but over here it just doesn't seem to happen so hopefully I'm due to make some good runs here," Waugh said. "I don't know what the reason is - normally we come here in August which is a tough time for us before the season has started." Despite his desire to remain positive ahead of the start of the Pakistan clash, he took time to lash out at a British newspaper for a recent article claiming he had said he was "semi-bored" with cricket. "That was a typically ordinary piece of journalism. What I said was 'One-day cricket can get a bit boring when you're playing the same team six or seven times'," Waugh said. "Somehow that got misconstrued that I was bored with cricket - it was some diabolical piece of journalism." Waugh said at the time that he wasn't bored with playing the game but found it hard to watch and was tired of doing interviews.

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