India still strong without in-form Dhoni: Mahela

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Published: Monday, February 20, 2012, 18:12 [IST]
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Can't take India lightly: Jayawardene

Brisbane, Feb 20: Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene is wary of Indian skipper's absence ahead of their clash at Brisbane on Tuesday, but says would not take the opposition lightly in the triangular series.

Indian skipper MS Dhoni will miss the team's clash against Sri Lanka on Tuesday due to slow over-rate ban after falling short to complete two overs on time.

"Dhoni is in good form and he is a match winner. But they have also got some really big players. We cant be complacent. We will focus on the entire Indian team and try and execute a good game plan. I think we didnt have a good start but we have improved as a team in every game," said Jayawardene.

"Our guys have been bowling pretty well. They are hitting good areas and adjusting to different surfaces so I feel they will give their best on this wicket as well," he added.

Jayawardene also stressed on the fact that his team will take advantage on Team India, which suffered a humiliating loss against Australia on Sunday at the same venue.

"It's a great opportunity for us and like I said, our goal is to get into the finals...there are four games left and rather than waiting for the results, if we can control our destiny (then) that's what we need to do," he said on the eve of the one-dayer here.

Since his move to open the innings against Australia worked, plans to go ahead with the same opening pair as they thrashed Australia by 8 wickets.

"We try to make tactical changes to see what fits for us. We made a move to make sure we got a good start, which we never had in the first few games. That seems to work but you never know. I will see how it goes," said Jayawardene.

"We have got good 14-15 players who we can pick depending on what combinations we are playing and against the opponent. “

He also said that the team will come up with a game plan and has told the players to be flexible, so that they can bat at different positions which shouldn't pose a threat later.

"I have asked all the batsmen to be flexible, batting at different positions. I think with the two new balls and given the powerplays and all, everyone has to do that. Trying to create a situation where everyone is very comfortable batting at different positions," he added.


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