Australia hope to face England in World Twenty20 final
Sydney: Australian skipper Michael Clarke has said the team is focused for the semi-final encounter against Pakistan and is hoping to face England in Sunday`s World Twenty20 final, which would be a good start for the Ashes series to be held later in the year.
The two old rivals face tough matches in their semi-finals, with Australia taking on defending champions Pakistan in St Lucia on Friday and England playing Sri Lanka on Thursday.
"I`d look forward to that, yeah. If we beat Pakistan and meet England in the final, it would be a good start to what is going to be a very good and interesting summer back in Australia as well with the Ashes," Clarke said.
"For me, right now, I`ve got both eyes on Pakistan, and I`ll worry about everything else after that. We didn`t come here to make the semi-finals," a newspaper quoted him, as saying.
Clarke said his side is more motivated by the fact that the World T20 Cup is Australia`s missing link, having dominated Test cricket for more than a decade and won four one-day international World Cups, including the past three.
"No doubt, it has motivated every player, not just throughout this tournament but throughout the last 12 months," said Clarke.
"We`ve certainly improved over the last 12 months. But again it`s important that you stay focused. We need to understand that what we`ve done in this tournament so far right now is irrelevant. We need to beat Pakistan in this game on Friday. Beating them a week ago is irrelevant," he added.
Australia was semi-finalists in the inaugural World T20 in 2007 and first-round losers in 2009, meaning they were not among the eight seeds for the Caribbean event.
"We`ve come into this tournament ranked very low and our performances have been outstanding," Clarke said.