'Boom Boom Afridi' is our advantage over India: Malik

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Johannesburg, Sep 12 (UNI) Ahead of the 'special' encounter against India, Pakistani captain Shoaib Malik is counting on the explosive batsman Shahid Afridi to give them their much-desired victory against the arch-rivals.

Malik speaking to mediapersons said, ''For us, any game against India is very special. My team is working hard and they are keen to go out and give their best against India.

''Actually, anyone can be a trump card in this (Twenty20) version of the game. If a bowler gets two wickets in an over, or if a batsman gets you 15 runs in an over, he could turn the game on its head. But, having said that, we do have an advantage in having a player like Afridi in our ranks because getting a good start will be important,'' he added.

Pakistan will play against Scotland at Kingsmead today before taking on India on September 14 at the same venue in the ongoing Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa.

Malik believes the slam bang version of the game requires getting a good start in the first few overs from either batting or bowling, which proves to be the difference between winner and looser.

''If the openers give a head start while batting, or if the bowlers do well in the first five-six overs, it can make a huge difference. It's like the 100-metre race. Getting a good start is very important,'' he asserted.

Pakistan, after winning its debut Twenty20 international match against England on August 28, 2006, has played four matches winning three and losing one.

Afridi, nicnamed 'Boom Boom Afridi', currently holds the highest career strike rate (109.38 runs per 100 balls in ODI's) in the history of international cricket. The 27-year-old is also holding the record of scoring the fastest ODI century 102 runs in just 37 bowls, hitting 11 sixes and six fours, against Sri Lanka.

UNI

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