Skipper Mathews confident Sri lanka will bounce back

Published : 9:10 am  August 1, 2018 | No comments so far |  | 


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 Sri Lanka Skipper Angelo Mathews at the press conference yesterday. 


By M. Shamil Amit reporting from Dambulla

Sri Lanka skipper Angelo Mathews was optimistic that Sri Lanka could level the five-match One Day International series against South Africa, when the two teams meet in the second ODI at Dambulla today. 
The hosts lost the first ODI on Sunday by five wickets. 

Rain could be a factor in today’s match, with heavy rains at the Dambulla forcing the ground staff to cover the entire field, and a delayed start looks on the cards if it rains in the morning.

Skipper Angelo speaking to the media said that there could be some changes but right arm pacie Lahiru Kumara has been ruled out as he sustained a finger injury whilst practicing. 

“We have not finalised the playing eleven yet which would be decided after having a look at the pitch today,” Mathews said. 

“We had a long team discussion regarding the strategies that will be taken for this match and will be looking forward to make a comeback to level the series and think of other plans for the remaining three matches.”

 He praised Thisara Perera, who along with Kusal Perera rescued the Sri Lanka side in a vain effort, saying that the all-rounder had improved in the recent past and is playing with utmost confidence at the moment 
“I am looking forward for a repeat performance from him in the second match,” Mathews added. 



The state of the pitch after heavy rain
Pix by Samantha Perera


“We will have to first put our heads down and face them with confidence and perform with responsibility as in the previous game we lost our top five batsmen within the space of eight overs which was really disappointing.”

The South Africans would no doubt be coming into the game with confidence and their heads high but they cannot sit on the laurels of their win on Sunday and looking back at the performances of the Sri Lanka bowlers it was Akila Dhananjaya who was the only bowler to make any impression.

With Kumara not available Kasun Rajitha could most probably make his debut while Lakshan Sandakan, who was expensive in the first ODI, could make way for left-arm spinner Prabath Jayasuriya being included and Dhananjaya de Silva also being included.

If the Sri Lanka team is looking to make a comeback their batting will have to be sharper and a repeat performance would no doubt 
spell doom.