Intikhab optimistic about pitch for Pakistan-New Zealand semifinal

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Johannesburg, Oct 2(ANI): Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam has said the Wanderers pitch prepared for the Pakistan-New Zealand semifinal on Saturday would play much better than what it has seen in the past games of the Champions Trophy.

"The semifinals will be played on the same pitch that was used for the match between West Indies and India. The track is void of grass and would be a sporting one provided the sky stays clear and weather remains bright," The News quoted Intikhab, as saying.

"I think it would be much better surface than on what we have witnessed during the last week. Those pitches, where we saw teams scoring less than 150, were a bit wet. Now, when there is enough time for the curators to roll the surface, it would be a much improved surface," he added.

Intikhab emphasised that Pakistan cannot afford to take New Zealand lightly, and said: "I do not think any of the teams making it to the semis could be taken lightly. They all have got strength and the ability to play tough cricket. That is why they have reached the knock out stages."

" New Zealand's balanced side have got all the ingredients to give a tough time to Pakistan," he added.

Intikhab further said that Pakistan did their best to beat Australia on Wednesday, so that India could make it to the semifinals.

"We were almost there and had it not been to bad luck, India would have been there in the semis," he said. (ANI)

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