Mohali, March 26: Pakistan Captain Shahid Afridi is itching to go hammer and tongs at the Indian batsmen in Wednesday, March 30's semi-final encounter between the two sides. In so doing, he plans to stop batting maestro Sachin Tendular from reaching his much-anticipated 100th international century.
"Sachin will have to wait until after the World Cup for his 100th international century because we are not going to allow either him or any other Indian player to play a big innings," Afridi told a newspaper.
Tendulkar has been in prolific form in the World Cup and
completed 2,000 runs in the tournament earlier in this edition. He has also notched up a total of 18,000 runs in one-dayers in the previous game against Australia. He needs just one more hundred to complete 100 international centuries, the first by any batsman.
Afridi went on to say that he is certain that Pakistan will come out tops in the semi-final. "It is a game of cricket and both teams can lay claim they will win the semifinal but given our current form, I am confident we can beat India," Afridi said.
Afridi also conceded that his team was very much looking forward to facing India. "The players wanted this clash and we are looking forward to it. We know the expectations are high but at the end of the day, I have told the players that the team which controls and keeps its nerves in such a high tension match will prevail."
Afridi also felt that the pressure on India would be far more in the semifinal as compared to Pakistan as they would be playing in front of their home crowd.
"Normally whenever both teams play, there is great pressure because of the high expectations of the people but this time India are playing in front of their home crowd and the pressure will be greater on them," he said.
The flashy all-rounder minced no words to say his players were not feeling the pressure of having to go and play in India after a gap of nearly four years.
"We have a young team and many of our players have not played in India before but it is not a problem for them because they have become used to playing even home matches abroad. I am confident they can handle the pressures of playing in India."
Afridi, meanwhile, also appealed to the fans not to get overwhelmed by the occasion and to treat this high-profile clash between the neighbours as just another