Sri Lanka coach upbeat about team`s chances in Cup final

Updated: Mar 31, 2011, 18:29 PM IST

Mumbai: Sri Lanka coach Trevor Bayliss expressed confidence that his team can beat India in the final of the World Cup and lift the coveted trophy on April 2 here at the Wankhede Stadium if it plays to its full potential.

"If we concentrate on what we do the best then we can play some good cricket and if we play good cricket, we are going to be very difficult to beat," said Bayliss ahead of the clash of the Asian Titans for the hallowed crown on Saturday.

The Australian-born coach said while his team has come out with flying colours while performing under pressure cooker conditions at home, it was now India`s turn to do so.

"This match is 50-50 at this stage. Obviously, there will be a lot of pressure on India to perform at home. We have been able to do that in the last couple of games and come out with two good wins. The boys are quite confident about their chances in this World Cup," said Bayliss, who is set to quit
after the tournament.

However, Bayliss said the task was an arduous one despite the fact that his team had beaten India on a number of occasions.

"Yes, we have played India on a number of occasions and have beaten them before on a lot of occasions. (But) it (the final) is a difficult assignment.

"In the last three years, we have played 35 matches and this will be the 36th one. We have beaten them on a number of occasions. Our guys are confident we can play well and win," the Lanka coach added.

Bayliss also said that Sri Lanka`s experience of having played at the newly laid Wankhede pitch earlier in the tournament against New Zealand on March 18 in their last league game, would stand them in good stead.

"We have played here a couple of weeks ago. We had experience of playing on this wicket. We have fighters throughout the competition. This would not be any different."

Though India are a side, which is expected to face spin bowling with a lot of confidence and panache, Bayliss said his team`s spinners would trouble the Indian batting line-up that has waxed and waned during the tournament.

"If you see the last two or three knockout games there was extra pressure on all players. We are confident that our spinners can do the job. We are very happy that we have picked up a very balanced and fit team.

"Our spinners as well as pacers have had success against India in the past. Our bowlers have bowled very well in this tournament and I can`t see any reason why we can`t continue," he added.

The Australian also gave a big thumbs up to the 50-over format that was under siege from the hugely popular Twenty20 games.

"It has been a good World Cup. My point of view, watching from TV, is that it has created a lot of interest. To play World Cup in the sub-continent (was a good idea) as people are very passionate.

"They have been fantastic, not only in India but also in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. We have also seen some very good matches and some very good performances," he added.

PTI