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Coach Miandad confident of Pak win against Kiwis

Pakistan coach Javed Miandad said his side will battle for a second straight win against New Zealand in their one-day match on Monday.

india Updated: Nov 30, 2003 16:40 IST

Pakistan coach Javed Miandad said his side will battle for a second straight win against New Zealand in their one-day match on Monday to put them in the same group as arch-rival India in a major tournament next year.

A win in the second match will lift Pakistan to number three in the world rankings ahead of the naming of groups for the biennial International Cricket Council (ICC) event to be held in England in September 2004.

The ICC is due to announce the seedings for the 12-team event after the second match of the five match series against New Zealand. Pakistan leads 1-0 following their thrilling three-wicket win in Lahore on Saturday.

"I am proud the way my team played, what else can a coach ask from his boys other than a win and my team is not wary of India or Australia," said Miandad.

"If my players play to their potential they can beat any side in the world," said Miandad.

If Pakistan loses to New Zealand on Monday, it will fall to fourth and will play England and Zimbabwe (9th) in group matches in the ICC event.

"I have never felt so proud of my team than after chasing 292 in the first match against New Zealand and I feel the team is gelling well," he said.

Captain Chris Cairns hit an unbeaten 84 for the novice New Zealand side, in which six players were making their debuts. They scored an impressive 291-5 and were sensing a win until Abdul Razzaq's 47 blasted off just 22 balls dashed the tourists' hopes.

Cairns, named captain for the Pakistan series after regular skipper Stephen Fleming was ruled out of the tour due to an abdominal injury, said he was happy the way his young side played.

"I'm still extremely proud of the way the guys played. While we can be disappointed with the loss, it has to be put in perspective," said the 33-year-old allrounder.

"I don't think I've ever played first-class cricket with six debutants and for four-fifths of the game, we were pretty much on top and we got it whipped away from us at the end."

New Zealand had caught Pakistan on the back foot and at 227-7 in the 44th over the home team needed 65 off 39 balls.

But Razzaq and Mohammad Sami hit the required runs off just 27 balls to expose the Black Caps' inexperience.

"The guys will take away some important lessons and part of the mandate for this tour is to see what new guys are like in these sort of situations."

"We tried to keep it calm, because sometimes you run around like headless chickens. We were trying to get the guys to stay calm and relaxed, and play the way they always have but in the end it slipped."

The tourists threw all the youngsters into the first match and for Monday's game can pick its strongest team. Dary Tuffey and allrounder Chris Harris, who rested on Saturday, are expected back in the team for Monday's encounter.

New Zealand: Chris Cairns (capt), Tama Canning, Craig Cumming, Chris Harris, Paul Hitchcock, Richard Jones, Hamish Marshall, Brendon McCullum, Jacob Oram, Mathew Sinclair, Daryl Tuffey, Daniel Vettori, Matthew Walker, Kerry Walmsley, Michael Mason.

Pakistan: Inzamam-ul-Haq (captain), Imran Farhat, Saleem Elahi, Yasir Hameed, Yousuf Youhana, Shoaib Malik, Abdul Razzaq, Azhar Mahmood, Moin Khan, Danish Kaneria, Shabbir Ahmed, Mohammad Sami,Shoaib Akhtar, Misbah-ul-Haq, Umer Gul.

Umpires: David Orchard (RSA) and Nadeem Ghauri (PAK).

TV umpire: Aleem Dar (PAK).

Match referee: Denis Lindsay (RSA).

First Published: Nov 30, 2003 16:40 IST