Jayasuriya wants to corner World Cup glory

Published: Sunday, October 17, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Lahore:Dashing Sri Lankan opener Sanath Jayasuriya said he has one more cricket wish -- to guide his country to another World Cup win in the West Indies in 2007.

"The wish is there, if I can guide Sri Lanka to win the World Cup... it would be the best thing I can do for Sri Lankan cricket. But for that I have to keep performing and keep my fitness," Jayasuriya told AFP on Sunday.

The 35-year-old proved his utility as a left-arm spinner by returning magical figures of 5-17 to help his team upset hosts Pakistan in the tri-series final in the eastern Pakistan city of Lahore on Saturday.

"I was not doing good with the bat so when I was given the ball I think, I must do something with it," he said.

His efforts triggered a Pakistan collapse which bowled the hosts out for 168.

Sri Lanka had earlier made 287-7 in their 50 overs with half centuries from Kumar Sangakkara and skipper Marvan Atapattu.

Six years earlier, Jayasuriya finished as player of the tournament when his country won the 1996 World Cup also in Lahore.

"Every win is memorable and for us Saturday's win was another memorable win," said Jayasuriya, who was Sri Lanka captain until last year.

"The 1996 World Cup win is not only an inspiration but when we come to Lahore we remind ourselves of the memorable win and the realisation that we can win every match that comes to us."

The left-hander started his career in 1990 and since then has scored 5,964 in 92 Tests with a best of 340 against India in 1997. In 332 one-day games he has accumulated 9,853 runs.

Jayasuriya, one of only two survivors of the 1996 team with pacer Chaminda Vaas, said the team was maturing well.

The Sri Lankan said he has no specific plan for the 2007 World Cup.

"I am taking my career series by series, it's early to talk about the 2007 World Cup but every good performance keeps me going," he said.

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