Jayawardene 'desperate' to defeat India in semi

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Published: Tuesday, June 18, 2013, 11:52 [IST]
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London, June 18: Sri Lanka's former captain Mahela Jayawardene has said he will be "desperate" to win against India and make the final of the Champions Trophy 2013.

Jayawardene was the key man in Sri Lanka's 20-run triumph over defending champions Australia on Monday (June 17). His fine 84 not out pave the way for the Islanders to march into the semi-finals. India and Sri Lanka will face off in Cardiff on June 20, Thursday.

Jayawardene 'desperate' to defeat India

It is the second time in three years that Sri Lanka and India will meet each other in a knockout game of ICC event. In 2011 World Cup final, both played and MS Dhoni-led side won despite Jayawardene's century.

After the game against Australia, Jayawardene was asked about how "desperate" he is to win against India as this might be his last appearance in a global event with the next World Cup scheduled in 2015.

"I don't know. I mean, you could see how desperate I was today. So I'll be desperate for every game to win, simple as that," the 36-year-old said.

"It's not about trophies or whatever, it's just to win matches. So I'll have that same passion and same desperation to win games, doesn't matter if it's a semi-final or final or just a group game. As long as I have that attitude and the rest of the boys, we'll go a long way," he added.

The right-hander conceded that India were a strong batting unit and they need to restrict them.

"I think they're playing some really good cricket. Their batting looks really strong, so those are key areas that we need to focus a bit on, but it's the semi-final," he said.

Jayawardene, who completed 11,000 ODI runs on Monday, did not feel the warm-up game loss to India would have any bearing on Thursday.

"Warm-up games or whatever, it doesn't count right now. It's a big tournament. It's the semi-final, so looking forward to that," he said.

India and Sri Lanka had previously contested the 2002 Champions Trophy final and with rain playing spoilsport on both days (including the reserve day), they had to share the trophy.

This is the final edition of the Champions Trophy. The first semi-final will see hosts England locking horns with South Africa on Wednesday (June 19).


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