Pakistan seek improvement with Sri Lanka Twenty20
Abu Dhabi: Pakistan captain Misbah-ul Haq hopes his team improves its record in the shortest form of the game with a win over Sri Lanka in a one-off Twenty20 on Friday.
Pakistan, the 2009 World Twenty20 champions, have lost 13 of their last 24 matches in the rapid-fire form of the game which plunged them to seventh in the inaugural Twenty20 rankings released last month.
But Misbah was confident his team will continue to improve after beating Sri Lanka 1-0 in three Tests and 4-1 in the five-match one-day series.
Misbah said the one-day series win excited him.
"It was an outstanding performance by the team," said Misbah after his team`s narrow three-wicket win in the fifth ODI at Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
"I am confident that we will do our best in the Twenty20 to improve our ranking."
Misbah, who has now won nine of the 10 one-day internationals since taking over as limited over captain in June this year, said the team`s goal was to improve with every match.
"It is good to beat a top ranked side 4-1 and I am very happy because my team is improving and performing so well. The goal is to improve day by day and we want to extend the victory sequence," said Misbah.
The victory lifted Pakistan to fifth in International Cricket Council one-day rankings.
Sri Lanka, relegated to four from two in ODI rankings, are placed second in Twenty20 rankings and their captain Tillakaratne Dilshan was hoping his batsmen lift themselves after failing to impress during the whole tour.
"It`s disappointing to lose the one-day series and we need to quickly address our batting problems before our tour of South Africa," said Dilshan of his team`s tour next month where they play three Tests and five one-day internationals.
"It will be a new game on Friday and a change of format, so I hope the players lift themselves," said Dilshan, whose team will also have the services of mystery spinner Ajantha Mendis for the Twenty20 match.
Dilshan praised Pakistan team as "one of the best in the world".
"Pakistan have more options than us and the way they played on this tour to me they are one of the top teams in the world," said Dilshan, who has lost three Tests and three one-day series since taking over in May this year.
Pakistan: Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Shahid Afridi, Mohammad Hafeez, Imran Farhat, Younis Khan, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Rehman, Umar Gul, Aizaz Cheema, Sohail Tanvir, Asad Shafiq.
Sri Lanka: Tillakaratne Dilshan (capt), Angelo Mathews, Upul Tharanga, Kumar Sangakkara, Dinesh Chandimal, Kushal Janith Perera, Thisara Perera, Ajantha Mendis, Dilruwan Perera, Lasith Malinga, Dilhara Fernando, Kosala Kulasekera, Charmara Silva, Dimuth Karunaratne.
Umpires: Zameer Haider (PAK) and Ahsan Raza (PAK).
Tv umpire: Shozaib Raza (PAK).
Match referee: Andy Pycroft (ZIM).