Keen fight on cards when Windies clash with Lanka

There's very little to choose between players from Emerald Island and those from Caribbean and the tie promises to be a thrilling contest.

india Updated: Oct 13, 2006 18:47 IST

Having already booked their place in the tournament proper, title holders West Indies and Sri Lanka would be keen to keep their momentum going when they clash in the last ICC Champions Trophy qualifying match at the Brabourne Stadium on Friday.

There's very little to choose between the cricketers from the Emerald Island and those from the Caribbean and the tie, the first international outing in the splendid setting at the Cricket Club of India in more than a decade, promises to be thrilling contest.

The victors in the match would qualify for Group B in the tournament proper, also comprising South Africa, Pakistan and New Zealand.

The losers would be pooled together with World Cup champions Australia, hosts and strong title contenders India and England in Group A.

West Indies captain Brian Lara said after his team's comprehensive ten-wicket win over Bangladesh at Jaipur on Wednesday that his team was keen to finish as the number one team by beating the Lankans.

"We want to continue the momentum. No team likes to go to the next stage of the tournament with a loss, and three (wins) in a row would be nice".

Sri Lanka would be equally interested in making it ten victories in a row in ODIs starting with a very creditable 5-0 whitewash of England in the latter's backyard.

The Lankans are a improved lot, a far cry from the one that visited India a season ago with Marvan Atapattu at the helm and was swamped in both Tests and ODIs, and have shown that the Mahela Jayawardene-led outfit is no pushover. More

First Published: Oct 13, 2006 17:29 IST