Posted on October 29th, 2011


From the first Test match in the current series with Pakistan, it was becoming clearer that Pakistan was a superior outfit in all three departments.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  The top performers and the rest of the team glued togetherƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to achieve a great victory during the second Test.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  PakistanƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s new test skipper Misbah Ul Haq is a ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-cool customerƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ working through a methodically worked out strategy throughout the innings.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  He has displayed extreme calm and composureƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  allowing the team to get on top of Sri Lanka.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  More than anything else, Misbah has had the over-all support of all team members, playing their own roles individually and collectively.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ 

By contrast, the Sri Lankan team has failed to maintain the team spirit. Most of the players, including some Seniors, were hell bound toƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  maintain their place in the team rather than concentrating and applying the techniques to remain within the pre-planned strategy.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  The lack of patienceƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  can be identified with all 11 players. Some of them have no pre-worked solution to come out of the misery.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Quite a number of Sri Lankan currentƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  team members are world class players in the batting department, though we are at the rock bottom with our bowling.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  The batsmen are not scoring sufficient runs, the bowlers looking down the barrel to bat as well and then bowl.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  This is too much pressure for the bowlers, even if they are well seasoned.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  But with the current bowlers who are up-coming mediocre performers, ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ to expect them to bat under tremendous pressure and then bowlƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  will be too much to expect , time after time.

Dilshan to his credit appears to be handling the team in the field single handedly.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Rarely we could see senior players coming togetherƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  with their inputsƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to blend the team success.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Dilshan had been made Captain at a time he never expected, now there are news reports of his impending replacement.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  But it appears that there arenƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢t anyone willing to take, perhaps except Angelow Mathews.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Angelow Mathews was originally recruited as an all rounder, but due to an ongoing injury, his services are restricted to batting only at the moment, ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ the role he is playing in a professional manner with the tail-enders, yet scoringƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  respectable number of runs.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  To put him on top of the Team is a recipe for disaster at this too early stage. Tharanga Paranavithana and Angelow Mathews can be seen as future potential leadersƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  in 3 to 4 years time.

Dilshan must be given the confidence and endorsement by the Administration and the rest of the team.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Dilshan in turn must open dialogue with the Seniors, , seek their views and work in a cohesive manner at regular intervals.

For the third Test, some changes must be made.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Mahela Jayawardene is a great player and he must self-motivated and re-inginited. Mahela should lead from the front. ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ It would be best for ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Mahela to open the batting in the third and Final test with Tharanga Paranavithana, followed byƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Chandimal as a specialist batsmen. ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Kumar Sangakkara, Dilshan Tilekeratne and Angelow ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Mathews & CompanyƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  can then be followed. Prasanna Jayawardene, if heƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  is fit should keep wickets, if not Kaushal Silva should continue replacing Prasanna for the time being.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Prasanna is a great cricketer, the team Administrators should consider Prasanna not only for Tests, but for ODIƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s as well,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Suraj Randiv and Rangana Herath should spearhead the spin attack, with Dilshan playing an assisting role. Chanaka WelagderaƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  is improving with both bat and the bowl and his place should be secured.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Kosala Kulasekera, debutant should team up with Chanaka Welagedera in the fast bowling attack.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Kosala 26 yrs of age, has an impressive batting ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ record in First Class cricket scoring 2751 runs in 72 matches at an average of 54 runs, with a highest score of 129 runs, two centuries and 14 half-centuries. In bowling in first class 72ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  matches, Kosala has taken 148 wickets at an economy rate of 3.54.ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Kosala should not be sitting on the Bench!


  1. Sunil Mahattaya Says:

    Neither Kosala, Prasanna nor Suraj should have been left out of the Second Test.Your points are astute, and about Dilshan, maybe there is a spilt faction within the team as someone hinted at! The two seniors in the side don’t seem to give a hoot about providing valuable input for Dilshan to manouvre the game towards winning. ~ his field setting is not great and his batting seems on the decline.He has bowled well though and his fielding as usual spot on! Aravinda de Silva has also observed that Thilan Samaraweera and Lasith Malinga had he been persuaded to return to Tests would have been key factors for Sri Lanka. Maybe the Board of Selectors are the culprits for Sri Lanka’s adversities! particularly the Chairman who seems good for the pasture!

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