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Last Updated: Sunday, 21 March, 2004, 19:09 GMT
Ganguly praises super stand
Mohammad Kaif celebrates scoring the winning run

Captain Sourav Ganguly paid tribute to Rahul Dravid and Mohammad Kaif after they steered India to a five-wicket win against Pakistan.

"Kaif and Dravid played outstandingly after we lost four top wickets with only 90-odd runs on board," he said.

The pair put on an unbroken 132 as India levelled the series at 2-2.

"The wickets are so good in Pakistan it doesn't matter who wins the toss," added Ganguly, who lost his fourth successive toss of the series.

Dravid, who finished unbeaten on 76, played a typically controlled innings to guide India to victory.

"Initially when I went in the guys had set a really scorching pace so really it was just a question of trying to bat through to the end," said the India vice-captain.

"We lost Sourav when he was going well and then Yuvraj came in and played a good knock as well and kept the tempo up, but we had lost probably one too many wickets at that stage.

"But then Kaif came in and played a really super knock.

"It was great batting with him because he never let the run rate drop, he kept rotating the strike brilliantly and he ran well between the wickets."

It will be wrong to say there was no effort on our part
Inzamam-ul-Haq
Pakistan captain
The decisive rubber of the five-match series will be played at the same Lahore venue on Wednesday and Dravid is delighted the contest is going to the wire.

"It's going to be a big game," he said. "I know the guys in their dressing room will be really hurting because I think they look upon this as an opportunity that has been lost.

"They will feel that at one stage they should have wrapped up the series here but we've fought back and kept it alive, so we're looking forward to it."

Pakistan captain Inzamam ul-Haq blamed his bowlers for the defeat.

"Our bowlers were not disciplined. They conceded too many runs and extras, allowing India to score more than seven per over early on," said Inzamam.

"We had worked in the nets to solve our problem [no-balls and wides] but the results are not coming in the match.

"But it will be wrong to say there was no effort on our part, it's just that the Indians stuck to their task. Dravid and Kaif were very good today."


WATCH AND LISTEN
India's Rahul Dravid
"It was a case of just trying to bat until the end"




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