ICC Champions Trophy

Narine looks to twist Pakistan

2013-06-06 21:00
Sunil Narine (File)
London - Sunil Narine will look to justify his status as the world's top-ranked one-day international bowler when the West Indies face Pakistan in their Champions Trophy opener at The Oval on Friday.

The off-spinner failed to make much impression in the West Indies' first warm-up match, against Australia, but took two for 26 in 10 overs against Sri Lanka at Edgbaston on Tuesday.

Narine hopes to make a big impact on this year's ICC Champions Trophy, having been encouraged by conditions in England.

He may not have made much of an impression during the West Indies' 2012 early season tour of England but hopes that pitches will be more receptive to spin at this time of year.

"It feels much better for me this year than when I was here last year," he told windiescricket.com.

"I am getting some purchase off the wicket and I'm hoping to help the West Indies to some more victories in this tournament.

"The wickets last year didn't offer much turn but this year I am getting a bit more turn, they suit me a bit more and I'm trying to make the most of it."

Friday's match is set to see the world's two leading one-day bowlers in action with Pakistan's Saeed Ajmal, also an off-spinner, ranked just below Narine in the International Cricket Council (ICC) standings.

While Ajmal is an established international, Pakistan's decision to drop Shahid Afridi and Younus Khan, allied to seamer Umar Gul's injury, has left them with some unfamiliar names in their side.

Gul's absence has created space for seamer Asad Ali, who took three for 30 in Monday's warm-up match against South Africa following his debut in a two-wicket win over Ireland in Dublin.

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