COLOMBO - Darren Sammy and his men put on a near-perfect show to beat Australia in the semifinal, but the West Indies captain thinks his team will have to play even better if it is to beat Sri Lanka in the World Twenty20 final today.
The West Indies beat Australia by 74 runs in a lopsided semifinal on Friday to set up a title clash with the host, who defeated Pakistan to reach the final.
"We needed our A-game to beat Australia and we have to touch better to beat Sri Lanka. We believe we can do that," Sammy told reporters yesterday. "Obviously, they know their conditions well. I just hope we get a very good cricket wicket, where batsmen could enjoy playing their strokes and the bowlers have something for them as well."
Sammy was hopeful that Chris Gayle, who smashed an unbeaten 41-ball 75 against Australia in the semifinal, would come to the party one more time.
"Once he is going, it's good for the team. We have the resources in the batting lineup too," Sammy said, adding that the final "is about every single person doing what they've been asked to do."
Sammy said the West Indies would rather focus on its own strengths than worry about Sri Lanka's advantages today.
"Whatever we get, we just go out and execute the game plans. We're not focusing on them but we're going to put more emphasis on us," Sammy said. "The crowd will be behind Sri Lanka but the belief in the dressing room is that we've done what we had to do to get to the final. Once we get there, probably we have to bring our A-plus game."
The West Indies last won a major international title in 2004 when it won the Champions Trophy, and Sammy was confident his team can end the long wait today.
"Winning will be massive. Over a decade, our fans are praying for bit of success," Sammy said, adding that the team's morale has been boosted by text messages from former World Cup-winning captain Clive Lloyd. "I think work stopped [during Friday's semifinal] for a few hours, back at home," Sammy said. "Winning means everything to us as players as well as the coaching staff. It will give us a big boost."
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