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Lara wants 'killer instinct' from team

The West Indies skipper encouraged his team to play better against India in the second Test on Saturday.

india Updated: Jun 10, 2006 16:26 IST
Associated Press
Associated Press

West Indies cricket captain Brian Lara said on Friday that he was encouraged with his team's performance in the drawn opening test against India but wanted more 'killer instinct' heading into Saturday's second test.

"The sort of resolute way we played on the last day showed a lot of fight, a lot of character," Lara said of his side's gritty draw with its last pair together.

"I think we first of all have to play tough cricket and if it turns out a draw, it's an accomplishment for us," he added.

Lara said he was disappointed that his side wasted a 130-run first innings lead and almost ended up losing the match from a position of strength.

"We need just to have that killer instinct both with bat and ball, to ensure that when we do get on top, we put the nail in the coffin," he said. "To actually be behind the eight-ball after being in front after the first two days shows a little bit of weakness and is an area we definitely need to improve."

At the media conference, Lara sported a Trinidad and Tobago soccer jersey in support of his country's first appearance at the World Cup finals on Saturday, when it takes on Sweden.

"If it is between winning the toss and Trinidad and Tobago winning the opening match, definitely Trinidad and Tobago winning the opening match," Lara said. "The toss on such a pitch is not as big as a World Cup victory."

The home team is weakened by the loss of its fastest bowler, Fidel Edwards, who tore a hamstring muscle in the first test and is ruled out.

He is replaced by his half brother, Pedro Collins, an experienced left-arm swing bowler who has taken 96 wickets in 29 matches. Corey Collymore, who hails from the same Barbados village as Edwards and Collins, is an injury doubt with a shoulder strain.

Jerome Taylor, the 21-year-old Jamaican, is in line to earn a place in the eleven.

India has also been handicapped by an injury to Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, who is sidelined with a sore heel.

Sreesanth's problem should mean a recall for Irfan Pathan, the exciting left-arm swing bowler who was left out in Antigua after a disappointing one-day series.

India may also find room for Harbhajan Singh, the off-spinner who has taken 227 wickets in 55 Tests.

The teams:

West Indies: Brian Lara (captain), Chris Gayle, Daren Ganga, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Dwayne Bravo, Denesh Ramdin, Ian Bradshaw, Dave Mohammed, Pedro Collins, Jerome Taylor, Corey Collymore, Runako Morton.

India: Rahul Dravid (captain), Wasim Jaffer, Virender Sehwag, VVS Laxman, Yuvraj Singh, Mohammad Kaif, Mahendra Dhoni, Irfan Pathan, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, Munaf Patel, Ramesh Powar, Dinesh Kartik, Suresh Raina, Vikram Singh.

Umpires: Simon Taufel (Australia), Asad Rauf (Pakistan).

First Published: Jun 10, 2006 10:24 IST