Cricket: Waugh eyes record of one-day victories

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The Independent Online
THE WORLD CHAMPIONS, Australia, will be aiming to equal England's record of 12 consecutive one-day wins between May 1991 and March 1992 when they meet Sri Lanka in the final of the Aiwa Cup triangular tournament today.

"If you look at our side and the way we are playing, we should win the game," said the Australia captain Steve Waugh, whose team have already beaten Sri Lanka twice in qualifying games.

Waugh will equal the former captain Allan Border's record for the most number of one-day appearances by an Australian when he plays his 273rd match in the same game.

Sri Lanka, the former world champions, are upbeat after edging out India on a better run-rate to win a place in the final. "We will certainly give Australia a good fight. We might even surprise them," said the Sri Lanka team manager, Chandra Schaffter.

The Pakistan cricket chief, Mujeeb-ur-Rehman, has called for a swift decision on allegations of betting and match-fixing against the country's leading players, Wasim Akram, Ijaz Ahmed and Salim Malik.

"If they are guilty they should be out, if not they should be allowed to play. But until the court decides they will be kept out," Rehman said.

Wasim, Ijaz and Salim were suspended on the basis of a 10-month-old report prepared by a committee investigating allegations of betting and match- fixing. Rehman said it was important a verdict on the three players was reached soon as Pakistan are to play West Indies in a limited-overs series in Toronto next month and the captain and the team are to be selected in early September.

Rehman was in Sri Lanka for a meeting of the Asian Cricket Council, where Pakistan took over the chairmanship from Sri Lanka.

ACC officials said they had merged their development plans with those of the International Cricket Council for the region. The ICC has drawn up a pounds 640,000 development plan for this year, but Thilanga Sumathipala, the former president of the ACC, said it is nowhere near enough.

"It is totally inadequate, especially for an underprivileged region where playing cricket is a luxury. In terms of assistance we would like to see more coming our way."