London:Be it with bat or ball, starting problem has been Pakistan's bane in their Super Eight opener against Sri Lanka, rued captain Younis Khan.
"It's all about the start, we gave away so many no-balls and wides early. And again with the bat we didn't start well," lamented Younis after Pakistan conceded a 19-run defeat against Sri Lanka at Lord's, here on Friday.
Pakistan had a disastrous start with Sohail Tanveer, opening the attack, sending down an 11-ball over yielding 18 runs.
Even though the Pakistan bowlers did well to restrict the Lankans to 150, their chase looked doomed right from start with opener Salman Butt departing before opening his account and Shoaib Malik and Kamran Akmal perishing in quick succession to leave Pakistan tottering at 35 for three.
Younis and Misbah-ul Haq stitched together a 66-run stand but once they departed, Pakistan just lost the plot.
"We had just one partnership and no one was there to carry it till the end," Younis said.
His Lankan counterpart Kumar Sangakkara, meanwhile, was effusive in praise of his bowlers who defended a chaseable total.
"It was a great effort to defend a small total. We really bowled well and fielded well today. The guys in the side showed real characters," the Lankan skipper said.
He, however, felt that Sri Lanka could have posted a bigger total with wiser shot selection on the batsmen's part. "It was a great effort from (Tillakaratne) Dilshan, but we needed more partnerships. I think we should have got 170-175 today," he said.
Dilshan, who was adjudged Man of the Match for his 39-ball 46, said his trademark scoop shot paid rich dividends on Friday.
"I just trained hard on it in the IPL. I have the confidence I can connect it every time and it makes life difficult for a bowler," said the Lankan.