PAKISTAN’s batting hero Mohammad Rizwan said his team was confident of achieving a World Cup record chase against Sri Lanka in Hyderabad, clinching Tuesday’s (10) match by six wickets.
Rizwan scored 131 not out and in the company of opener Abdullah Shafique (113) set the platform for chasing a daunting 345-run target with 10 balls to spare.
Rizwan said belief was the key.
“We had the belief to chase that down,” said Rizwan of Pakistan’s chase which beat the previous record of 328 by Ireland against England in Bangalore in 2011.
Rizwan praised Shafique’s knock and his partnership of 176 runs for the third wicket.
“Shafique played very well and when there is a 345-run target on the board then as opener you have a burden and he was up to the challenge,” said Rizwan.
Rizwan revealed the plan was to set a target for the last 20 overs.
“It was a supporting pitch so we decided that we will not look at the board and take a target of 20 overs and that paid off,” said Rizwan of the 163-run target in the last 20 overs.
“Shafique built the innings and that made the chase easy.”
Rizwan said Pakistan will play with the same plan against India.
“Our next match is against India and this will give us confidence and we will go with the same plan,” said Rizwan of the high-profile clash in Ahmedabad on Saturday.
Sri Lanka spinner Maheesh Theekshana said his team was 20 runs short.
“I think the turning point was the last 10 overs because we lost more than 20 runs,” said Theekshana of the 344-9 total. “Even in the bowling we made a lot of mistakes and we didn’t execute our plans.”
Theekshana believed Pakistan bowlers were clever in execution.
“Actually, the wicket was a little bit slow in the last 10 overs and they bowled a lot of slower balls and we didn’t execute our plans really well.”
Sri Lanka next face Australia in Lucknow on October 16.