Pakistan's Test and One-day captain, Misbah-ul-Haq has said his teammates will have to take the wickets of the stalwarts like Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara early if they want to win the upcoming two-Test series in Sri Lanka, commencing at Galle on August 6.
Jayawardene, 37, has announced that he would retire from Test cricket after the two-Test series this month, and is hoping to have a memorable farewell series.
"Obviously you have to take 20 wickets to win a Test match and we will try to do that. But we also know how important it is for us to not allow their senior players to get runs," Misbah told reporters before the national team's departure for Sri Lanka.
"If we are to win the series then we have to ensure their players don't score runs, particularly guys like Jayawardene and Sangakkara," he added.
Misbah said while he his and teammates have a lot of respect for Jayawardene, they would be targetting the senior batsman during the series.
The skipper said his team was expecting a tough time in Sri Lanka.
"It is going to be a big challenge for us because they have been playing a lot of cricket and they have been doing well," said Misbah.
"But we have prepared hard for this series and we are going there with lot of confidence in our batting line-up."
Misbah said while Pakistan has traditionally always depended on its spinners to do well in Sri Lanka but he was confident that the pace bowlers would also fulfil their role in the series.
"Saeed Ajmal is a world class spinner and he has done well against them but to win, all our bowlers have to fulfil their roles successfully," he said.
"Our team has been short on playing Test matches so this series is a blessing for us as we prepare for the World Cup. It also signals the start of our preparations for the World Cup," Misbah stated.