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Team riding high on confidence: Inzy

Pakistan would ensure the Indians remain on the mat by pulling off another win, Pak skipper declared on the eve of the match.

india Updated: Feb 10, 2006 16:52 IST

Pakistan would ensure the Indians remain on the mat by pulling off another win in the second ODI in Rawalpindi on Saturday, a confident Inzamam-ul Haq declared on the eve of the match.

The Pakistan skipper said his team was in good form and secure in the fact that it had the mental toughness needed to win games under pressure.

"We are in good form and have the mental toughness needed to handle pressure. That has made the difference," he said.

Inzamam said tomorrow's match was a very important one from Pakistan's point of view as a victory would not only see them go 2-0 up in the five-match series but also put added pressure on the Indians in the remainder of the rubber.

"It is a very important game for us. If we go 2-0 up, then the Indian team would be put under increased pressure and we will have the advantage in the next three matches," the 35-year-old batsman said.

Inzamam said his team had gained confidence in chasing big scores because of the experienced it had gained over the last few years.

"For chasing big scores you need confidence and the boys have become confident after gaining good experience in playing one-day cricket.

"We are playing good cricket at the moment and would continue to do so," he added.

"In one-day cricket, it is difficult to say who is the favourite. The team that plays better on the day wins. But we have gained a lot of confidence after winning the Karachi Test," he said.

Inzamam, however, did not feel that the match here would be another tall-scoring one as was the case at Peshawar when India made 328 and Pakistan were 311 for 7 in 47 overs when the game was called off because of poor light conditions.

"I do not think it will be a tall-scoring game. It is a grafting kind of wicket."

He said the team was making a conscious effort to cut down on the extras it was conceding. "We are trying to cut down on no-balls and wides. Hopefully we will bring them down here," he said.

Pakistan conceded three wides and six no-balls at Peshawar while India's tally was two (both no-balls).

Inzamam also said his bowlers needed to try and restrict the Indians from scoring big again as it was not easy to chase big scores often.

Inzamam came out in full support of youngster Shoaib Malik batting at number three.

"Shoaib has scored 1,090 runs batting at number three. He has been among our most successful batsman in ODIs recently. Anyway one-dayers call for flexibility in the batting order. I myself come in at 4, 5 or 6 depending on the situation. It's our aim to send batsmen at their best batting positions."

The Pakistan captain also said the Powerplays had increased the interest in the game. "It's better to finish it off in the first 20 overs. But definitely the powerplay concept has increased interest," he said.

First Published: Feb 10, 2006 16:52 IST