Australia hopes to face England in World Twenty20 final

Australian skipper Michael Clarke has said the team is focused for the semi-final encounter against Pakistan and is hoping to face England in Sunday’s World Twenty20 final, which would be a good start for the Ashes series to be held later in the year.

The two old rivals face tough matches in their semi-finals, with Australia taking on defending champions Pakistan in St Lucia on Friday and England playing Sri Lanka on Thursday.

“I’d look forward to that, yeah. If we beat Pakistan and meet England in the final, it would be a good start to what is going to be a very good and interesting summer back in Australia as well with the Ashes,” Clarke said.

“For me, right now, I’ve got both eyes on Pakistan, and I’ll worry about everything else after that. We didn’t come here to make the semi-finals,” The Sydney Morning Herald quoted him, as saying.

Clarke said his side is more motivated by the fact that the World T20 Cup is Australia’s missing link, having dominated Test cricket for more than a decade and won four one-day international World Cups, including the past three.

“No doubt, it has motivated every player, not just throughout this tournament but throughout the last 12 months,” said Clarke.

“We’ve certainly improved over the last 12 months. But again it’s important that you stay focused. We need to understand that what we’ve done in this tournament so far right now is irrelevant. We need to beat Pakistan in this game on Friday. Beating them a week ago is irrelevant,” he added.

Australia was semi-finalists in the inaugural World T20 in 2007 and first-round losers in 2009, meaning they were not among the eight seeds for the Caribbean event.

“We’ve come into this tournament ranked very low and our performances have been outstanding,” Clarke said. (ANI)

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