Defeats will help Pakistan ahead of Indian tour - Malik

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LAHORE, Pakistan, Oct 30 (Reuters) Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik is in positive mood, despite his team's test and one-day series defeat to South Africa, which he says will help them prepare for a tough Indian tour.

''We are disappointed to have lost out on a chance to win the the series but the guys tried hard and we will learn from our mistakes for the Indian tour,'' Malik told Reuters.

''If anything it is good we lost because now we can learn and be better prepared for the Indian tour which is always a pressure one for us.'' Pakistan leave for India on November 1 to play five one-day internationals and three tests. Their first one-dayer will take place in Guwahati on November 5.

Pakistan were defeated in their five-match one-day series to South Africa yesterday 3-2 after losing the final game by 14-runs.

South Africa also won the test series 1-0.

Malik insisted his team did not cave-in under pressure and said no one was to blame for the defeat.

''We batted irresponsibly in the final match after a solid start,'' he said. ''I don't want to blame anyone because everyone tried their best.

''One result does not mean we are chokers,'' he added.

Malik said the return of rebellious strike bowler Shoaib Akhtar was a big boost for the team.

''He is always an asset for the team and top bowler if he is 100 per cent fit,'' Malik said.

''It is good he bowled so well after playing after such a long time. It is good sign for the Indian series.'' Akhtar returned to international cricket on Monday and took 4-43 after serving a 13 matches ban from his cricket board.

REUTERS TB HS1330

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