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Last Updated:  Monday, 10 February, 2003, 20:19 GMT

Black Caps rue nervy start
New Zealand's Daryl Tuffey
Daryl Tuffey appeals in vain

New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming is confident his side can still reach the Super Sixes stage despite losing their opening World Cup game against Sri Lanka.

Fleming was disappointed with the way the Black Caps' batting crumbled as they fell 47 runs short of Sri Lanka's total of 272.

But he set his sights on victories in the next two matches against the West Indies in Port Elizabeth on Thursday and hosts South Africa at the Wanderers on Sunday.

"The loss was disappointing, the manner of it was disappointing," admitted Fleming.

"A loss is a loss and we now have to look forward to winning our next two games.

"We hoped there would be a little more pace in the wicket and we thought after watching Sri Lanka that we could expose them with the pace and make good inroads.

Part of controlling the day is controlling your nerves
New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming

"If we did that, we thought we could give ourselves a target and the results on this ground have favoured teams batting second.

"But we didn't get that advantage from the start that we had wanted."

Fleming said that his side were "extremely nervous" going into the game and it showed when Nathan Astle was run out for a duck attempting a crazy single.

They are now under even greater pressure as their refusal to play Kenya in Nairobi next week means they will forfeit that match.

"It was nerves today, as it was a pretty big day, and part of controlling the day is controlling your nerves and I didn't think we did that well," added Fleming.

"We had a hesitant start, it was one that we needed to get away well, but they took wickets throughout."

Sri Lanka captain Sanath Jayasuriya
"I knew I had to play a long, positive innings"

Have Your Say on New Zealand
10 Feb 03 |  Have Your Say
Have Your Say on Sri Lanka
04 Jan 03 |  Have Your Say

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