Thatscricket - ODI Series - India~~s tour of Pakistan- ~~I think it~~s a 50-50 chance for both teams~~

Published: Monday, March 29, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Lahore:Smarting under a shock defeat in the fourth One-dayer, Pakistan coach Javed Miandad now believes both India and Pakistan will have a 50-50 chance in the deciding fifth and final One-day cricket match in Lahore on Wednesday.

But victory and defeat notwithstanding, the Pakistan coach said the series has served its cause.

"Winning and losing apart, I think this series has done a lot for the cause of Indo-Pak relations and I salute Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and President Pervez Musharraf for their contributions in making this series possible," said Miandad.

Going in to the fourth match with a 2-1 lead, Miandad had hoped to wrap up the series on Sunday but his bowlers "let him down" as Pakistan suffered a five-wicket defeat in the day-night match.

"I had wished we wrap up the series on Sunday but the bowlers let us down and now I think it is a 50-50 chance for both the teams and whoever avails the chances will win the series," he said.

"Everyone would blame the bowlers for the defeat because we had the match in our pockets after getting their top four players but we bowled badly in the middle overs to lose the grip," said Miandad, also worried over too many extras being conceded by his bowlers.

"Our batting has done more than we expected but the bowling let India make 349 in the first match, almost gave them 330 in the second and on Sunday failed to defend 294, it is disappointing."

But despite the bowling loopholes, Miandad was not in favour of appointing a bowling coach.

"A coach can only guide, it is up to the individual player to do his best to overcome his drawback. Even a bowling coach would not be able to help if the players do not help themselves," said Miandad, who played a record 124 Tests for Pakistan making 8132 runs.

Describing the off and on field atmosphere of the series as exhilarating, he said, "it is like a dream, we had never thought it would be like this. Fans have mingled like brothers and this people to people contact must continue in the future and we must tour India as soon as possible."

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