The series is yet to kick off but Pakistan's cricketers are already spending sleepless nights trying to figure out how they would tackle the Sri Lankan spin twins Muttiah Muralitharan and Ajantha Mendis in the forthcoming one-day and Test matches in Karachi.
Senior Pakistan batsman Younis Khan said he was working out how to successfully deal with Mendis, who has bamboozled batsmen with his mystery bowling grip and variations. Mendis' bowling grip which is similar to those used in tape tennis cricket even left the Indian batsmen guessing when they toured Sri Lanka last year while in the two matches against Pakistan he has been on top.
"It is going to be a challenge to play him successfully and outfox him because his biggest advantage is he has someone as experienced and lethal as Muralitharan bowling with him at the other end," Younis said.
Coach Intikhab Alam and selectors have already started studying video tapes of Mendis and are keen to have their batsmen play on cement tracks and against tape tennis finger spinners in a training camp due to start from January 17. Sri Lanka play three one-day games on January 21, 24 and 27 before returning in February to play two Tests in Karachi and Lahore.
The national selection committee is due to meet and deliberate for two days starting on Monday to finalise the probables for the series.