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July 12, 2006
Kaneria, who has played county cricket with great success for Essex, hopes he can take his form in English conditions with him to Lord's and follow in the footsteps of Shane Warne, who took 40 wickets in last year's Ashes series. "Lord's has something special because cricket was born in England and this is a ground where people make their name," Kaneria, 25, said. "Everyone remembers a special performance at Lord's more than anywhere else.
"I've dreamed about it for years and now it's about to happen: a Test match at Lord's and an opportunity to make my name at the historic ground. Lord's is a ground every cricketer wishes to perform at, the whole Lord's experience is wonderful and I would love to do well for my country and be on the winning side."
Kaneria, who claimed 11 wickets in the three-Test series that Pakistan won 2-0 in November and December (including a match-winning six for 99 at Lahore), is aiming to emulate the success earlier in the season of Muttiah Muralitharan. Muralitharan finished the drawn three-match series with England with 24 wickets and Kaneria is confident he can have a similar impact, having already taken 156 wickets in 36 Tests.
"People have said the ECB [English Cricket Board] scheduled Sri Lanka in the early part of the summer so their batsmen did not have to face Murali in the drier conditions," Kaneria told bigstarcricket.com. "I don't know if that is true but all I can say is I will try my best and if it is my day and if the ball comes out well, I know I can cause problems.
"We know England will be a tough challenge on home soil. Kevin Pietersen is playing very well and I noticed he played Muralitharan the best of the England batsmen by being aggressive and he will be a dangerous player to us."
Both sides have been affected by injuries but Kaneria insisted no matter who played for England, they would want to make up for December's defeat. "England will want to take revenge," Kaneria, who claimed four-wicket hauls in the second innings of both victories, said. "They have not been performing as well as they can since winning the Ashes so I think they will be very keen to put things right against us. Even with their injuries they will come at us hard but I have every confidence in my team-mates to stand up to whatever they throw at us."
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