Pakistan start as slight favourites Pakistan will be looking to their fresh set of players to deliver the goods against Sri Lanka in the ODI series which gets underway with the first ODI at Dambulla today. The greenshirts have been bolstered by the return of their ODI specialists like Shahid Afridi, Rana Naved and Imran Nazir. This will also be the first ODI for Mohammad Yousuf since breaking ties with Indian Cricket League. On paper Pakistan team looks stronger. In batting Pakistan will be relying on Younis Khan, Yousuf, Misbah-ul-Haq, Shoaib Malik and Shahid Afridi. Teenager Umar Akmal the younger brother of keeper Kamran is also expected to bolster the line up especially after his brisk hundred in the practice game against Sri Lanka A. Pakistan team will get more balance with the presence of all-rounders like Afridi, Abdul Razzaq, Rana Naved and Fawad Alam. Pakistan will have to put the Test series loss behind them and start afresh with a positive frame of mind. The bowlers will have to fire to check a proficient opposition batting. Umar Gul disappointed in Tests and will have to improve his game for the ODI series to prove the label of being the lead bowler of the attack. Sri Lankans in the meanwhile will be happy with the return of champion spinner Muttiah Muralitharan and slingy fast bowler Lasith Malinga. Hard hitting batsman Tillakaratne Dilshan will miss out due to injury and Upul Tharanga is expected to open the innings with Sanath Jayasuriya. The Sri Lankan bowlers posed quite a few problems for Pakistan in the Test series so the visitors batsmen will have to be vary of them. Plus the return of Muralitharan and Malinga will add more strike power to their attack making them difficult to handle. The pitch in Dambulla is not known to be a high scoring one. Batsmen will have to apply themselves and graft their innings as going all out with the bat won't be easy. Sri Lankans are always a formidable one-day unit and they also beat Pakistan earlier in the year in the ODI series is Pakistan so Younis and his men will have to vary of them. Pakistan team looked to be slightly more balanced unit and if the all-rounders fire for them, they are in with a really good chance. Sri Lankans in the meanwhile will go flat out and will be on a high after their victory in the Test series. They are always been a hard nut to crack on home grounds so Pakistanis have their work cut out despite their resources.