Pak to take on Scotland

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> Pakistan and New Zealand wrapped up their preparations on Tuesday ahead of their opening ICC World Twenty20 games in Durban.

Updated: September 12, 2007 11:03 IST
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Pakistan and New Zealand wrapped up their preparations on Tuesday ahead of their opening ICC World Twenty20 games in Durban.

Both teams will be playing at Kingsmead Stadium on Wednesday, with the New Zealanders due to take on Kenya before Pakistan face Scotland.

Pakistan will open their account against minnows Scotland and, with the likes of big-hitting Shahid Afridi and consistent run-scorer Younis Khan in their ranks, the Pakistanis should have little trouble in disposing of the Scots.

Coach Geoff Lawson is also confident and believes that his side is well-balanced, with plenty of stars able to turn a game.

The Australian also believes that it's important to have a well-structured plan in Twenty20 cricket.

He said, "You've got to have planning for every sort of the game. We'll be playing our fast bowlers mainly because they are very fast and, you know. Good bowling will still be good bowling, whatever sort of the game and we think we can take wickets with our good fast bowling, but our batting's pretty deep.

"We've got some, a number of very attacking players and that suits this form of the game. So, you know, we'll shuffle our order and be flexible and things like trying to get Shahid Afridi to face as many balls as possible. That's just common-sense cricket."

As has become the norm, the Pakistanis have had to put controversy behind them in the build-up to the tournament.

Fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar was sent home after a scuffle with fellow seamer Mohammad Asif and the Pakistanis will have to make do without the speedster.

Asif will have to now head the bowling attack, but Lawson still has plenty of options.

He is also of the belief that the Twenty20 game is more than just "hit-and-giggle" and requires plenty of skill.

Also in action on Wednesday will be New Zealand, who take on Kenya in the day's first game.

All-rounder Daniel Vettori will lead the side after taking over from Stephen Fleming, who stepped down as one-day captain and then didn't make the trip to South Africa.

The Black Caps usually enjoy their status as "dark horses", but they have some established players now, who probably don't fit that tag.

All-rounder Scott Styris is a dangerous player, particularly with bat in hand, and the strike bowling force will be led by Shane Bond, who, when fit, is one of the fastest bowlers in the world, on his day.

New Zealand should cruise past Kenya and most of the sides in South Africa will be weary of their presence.

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