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Pakistan to go for a win: Lawson
December 11, 2007 22:07 IST
India may have managed to take an upper hand in the third and final Test but Pakistan coach Geoff Lawson made it clear that his wards would be game for a chase on the final day on Wednesday.
India have already taken an overall lead of 220 runs with eight wickets in hand but an unfazed Lawson said Pakistan, trailing 0-1 in the series, would go for a win even if they are set a 300-plus target.
"We need eight wickets tomorrow and our job will be to get those eight wickets as quickly as possible. If India set a target, then we will go after it," Lawson told reporters.
"If they set us a target like 320 off 68 overs or so then we will go after it," said the former Australian speedster.
Though the placid M Chinnaswamy track drew flak, Lawson had a different view of it.
"This wicket surprises me, the odd ball keeps low but it is getting better and better. It did something on the first day but it has got better on the fourth day. Persistence is the key.
"Yasir (Arafat) bowled well on the first day. He got his three wickets quickly but the next two came after some time. Anyway, it is nice to see a young fast bowler (Ishant Sharma) getting five wickets so early in his career."
Lawson looked impressed by the Delhi pacer and said, "It's nice to see a bowler hit the deck hard and he could be handy in Australia. He has pace and bounce."
Among the Pakistanis, Misbah-ul-Haq, who slammed unbeaten 133 to help the side avoid follow-on, came in for rich praise from the coach.
"It surprises me that he hasn't played much. He has been outstanding in this series. He got 80-odd at Delhi before getting run out, then he could have ended not out in the second innings, before producing a brilliant knock in Kolkata.
"It needs an unplayable ball to get him out. He concentrates hard and is a solid number five. He has shown that he is a world-class player," Lawson said.
"We came here after South Africa series and had to leave Mohammad Asif back home because of injury. We haven't played to our best as well. But you have to take the bad with the good. Had Shoaib (Akhtar) bowled around 25 overs in the first innings India would not have got to 600."
To a question whether Pakistan batted slowly, Lawson said, "We had a target of avoiding the follow-on and we did that first. We lost a couple of wickets with Younis and Yousuf getting out in succession and lost a bit of momentum. Akmal then helped Misbah and the two played like they did in Kolkata."
Lawson, meanwhile, took the occasion to suggest that Indo-Pak series should feature five Test matches, instead of three.
"I think this needs to be a five-Test series. It's little unsatisfactory to have three Tests because it is tough to come back after losing the first. India and Pakistan are always great contests and it deserves to be a five-match series."