No room for on-field charity as India, Pak lock horns at Abu Dhabi
Abu Dhabi, Apr 17 (UNI) Fresh from a thumping 5-1 triumph over England, India would look to continue their winning ways, while Pakistan will have revenge on their mind when the sub-continental arch-rivals square off in the first of the two-match ODI series at Zayed Cricket Stadium here tomorrow.
Close to 18,000 cricket starved fans will witness the clash, the first in the past six years here.
Indians arrived just over 24 hours ago after routing a depleted England team in the seven-match home series.
Rahul Dravid's men are in high spirits after the youngsters in the team grabbed every opportunity they got but in the ended created a happy problem of plenty for the team management.
But one cannot count out the Pakistani team so easily. Inzamam-ul Haq's men are also raring to go after their victory over Sri Lanka and coach Bob Woolmer is confident that his team will extract revenge for the humiliating 4-1 home loss to India.
''We have had a good series in Sri Lanka. We won both the test and ODI series having come from difficult situations. It shows the character of the team,'' Woolmer said after a training session yesterday.
''Obviously India is not an easy team to beat. They are playing well at the moment but Pakistan has got the type of players to match them in all departments of the game,'' he added.
Even as the two teams gear up for the showdown, preparations are on to make it a dazzling affair and the organisers have a glittering opening ceremony for the tournament.
''It's one of the biggest shows of its kind under the theme ''Unity, Help and Giving,'' the organisers said of the openeing ceremony, which would see a performance by a 300-strong dance troupe.
The locals are waiting impatiently for the match to start and organisers have left no stone unturned in their effort to make the matches a memorable affair.
''It's a fantastic facility for international cricket. The outfield is nice, the pitch was a bit worn out because of overuse, but this has been put right by the ICC pitch consultant,'' Woolmer said in admiration of the facilities here.
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