If one was to look at the scorecards of the ongoing series, the honours have been shared evenly by both teams — Pakistan and Sri Lanka have been convincing winners in the matches they dominated.
Yet both teams have had their fair share of weaknesses to overcome as the third One-Day International (ODI) takes place at the R Premadasa Stadium, Colombo.
Pakistan, despite an attack boasting of experienced individuals, failed to contain the Sri Lankan batsmen in the second ODI and the batsmen were not up to the task in reply.
In the opening ODI, the same was the case for Sri Lanka. Preceding the ongoing ODI series were two Twenty20s that saw the same pattern as well.
With a crucial match today – followed by two more ODIs at the same venue – both teams would be keen to put past their inconsistent show and display a more even performance in the same game.
Misbahul Haq will remain calm and composed ahead of the match. His opposite number, Mahela Jayawardena, on the other hand, is looking to end Pakistan’s unbeaten run over Sri Lanka at the venue – Pakistan have not lost an ODI against the hosts in the past five games the teams have faced each other in.
“We haven’t played that well against Pakistan [at the R Premadasa Stadium], it’s up to us to challenge ourselves,” Jayawardene told ESPNcricinfo.
“Pakistan’s a quality team. The bowling unit, with the variations they have, has the fire-power to play in any conditions, that that is why they are successful in these conditions.”
Published In The Express Tribune, June 13th, 2012.
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