Windies aim for winning start

Colombo, Sri Lanka – The West Indies will open their three-match One-Day International Series against Sri Lanka on Monday at the Sinhalese Sports Club. The series will form the main preparation for both teams ahead of the International Cricket Council’s Cricket World Cup 2011.

After Sunday’s training session, Windies skipper Darren Sammy outlined the side’s plans for the series-opener as well as the entire series. He noted that the aim was to get off to a winning start and set the tone for the three-match rubber.

First ball: Monday is 9.30 am (Sunday 12 midnight Eastern Caribbean Time/11 pm Jamaica Time).

“This series is a new start for us. It would mean everything to the team to get off to a winning start against the Sri Lanka in their own backyard. There is all to play for and we will take the field confident that we can win. A victory tomorrow (Monday) would set the tone for the series and would also give us a boost ahead of the World Cup.

“The pitch we will be playing on looks similar to the one we played on against the President’s XI when we were here for the Test Series last November. It is green but back then it did not do much ... not much movement ... so we will play accordingly. We will be looking to play well in all three disciplines. The Sri Lankans play really good cricket, especially at home, and we have to be at our best.“

Sammy added: “We are happy to have Ramnaresh Sarwan back in the squad for this series and for the World Cup. It is a massive boost for the team. He’s an outstanding batsman and a very knowledgeable and experienced cricketer at the international level. We all know the calibre of player he is and he will add a lot of quality to our batting line-up. I know he will give his best for the team and put his best foot forward. We have a very good team spirit in the camp and Sarwan has fitted in well on his return.

“Looking at the make-up of our squad we have a number of allrounders. It is good to have players who can make match-winning contributions in more than one department. We all have to go out and play according to the team plan and stick to team goals.”

West Indies:
Darren Sammy (captain), Chris Gayle,  Adrian Barath, Devon Smith Ramnaresh Sarwan, Darren Bravo, Dwayne Bravo, Shiv Chanderpaul, Kieron Pollard, Carlton Baugh, Sulieman Benn, Nikita Miller, Ravi Rampaul, Kemar Roach, Andre Russell

Sri Lanka: Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawerdena, Upul Tharanga, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Chamara Kapugedera, Angelo Mathews, Thilan Samaraweera, Chamara Silva, Thisara Perera, Muttian Muralitharan, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kalusekera, Dilhara Fernandao, Rangana Herath, Ajantha Mendis

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