Thursday, March 21, 2019 | ePaper
Australia target first Asia series win since 2011 - Paine
Australian skipper Tim Paine vowed his team would do its utmost to win the second Test against Pakistan starting in Abu Dhabi from Tuesday for a first series win in Asia since 2011.
The trying conditions of the pitches and hot weather have stopped Australia from winning a series since they beat Sri Lanka 1-0 in 2011.
Since then they have lost 4-0 in India (2013), 2-0 in United Arab Emirates to Pakistan (2014), 3-0 in Sri Lanka (2016), 2-1 in India (2017) and drew 1-1 in Bangladesh last year.
But Paine's side snatched a morale-boosting draw on the fifth and final day in the first Test in Dubai, the skipper and number 10 Nathan Lyon seeing out the final 12.2 overs after being set a daunting target of 462 runs.
"We want to win every series we are involved in," Paine said Monday. "We are focusing on what we do and if we can do well for five days then we have a really good chance of winning it.
"We are reasonably confident. After the last few days we got a little bit of relief and a little bit of mileage, so we know if we play our best cricket we have got a chance to win this Test match.
"We are coming into this Test with a bit more momentum and guys know what to expect a bit more in these conditions," said Paine, who announced paceman Mitchell Starc will play in Abu Dhabi.
That is hint enough that Australia are likely to keep the same starting XI.
Paine admitted Pakistan were a "very good team".
"They have some good batters, particularly in these conditions. We know what we are up against and we know they are an excellent team and even better in these conditions."