Home / Sports/ Defeats hurting team morale ahead of World T20, says Mathews

Defeats hurting team morale ahead of World T20, says Mathews

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Thursday, 3 March 2016 00:39


Madushka Balasuriya, reporting 

from Dhaka, Bangladesh

Sri Lanka’s poor showing so far in the Asia Cup, as well a string of recent poor performances in T20 internationals, has left the team low on confidence and morale ahead of the World T20 in India later this month, Captain Angelo Mathews has admitted.

Sri Lanka have won just one out of their three matches so far in the tournament; that, too, a laboured performance against minnows UAE, where the bowlers had to bail out a limp batting performance. The form of the Lankan batting has been a major concern for a while now, with the batsmen also failing to fire in last month’s series in India, and Mathews cut a resigned figure in trying to explain the consistent failings of his side’s batsmen.

“It’s quite damaging [for World T20 preparations], especially for the confidence levels and morale. It’s pretty hard to digest when you keep losing. We haven’t played our best cricket yet and the most worrying factor is that we haven’t clicked in our batting order,” said Mathews speaking after his side’s five-wicket defeat to India on Monday night. 

“And so close to a World Cup, we have to connect the dots together and maybe try a few combinations. I don’t really know. We just have to be positive.”

The batsmen showed signs of improvement against India, with Chamara Kapugedera in particular looking good. Kapugedera scored 30 off 32 deliveries having come in at the fall of the second wicket. It was the first time this tournament that he had been pushed up the order and Mathews said that that had always been the plan.

“Kapugedera is one of our senior players and he showed his character and experience today. We’re trying to utilise him where we feel its best. We’ve had this batting order lined up for the last few games but we kept changing it because of the need to keep left hand/right hand combinations in the middle,” he explained. 

“I also sensed a positive approach today in our batting. Our intent was to score runs, and not to just hang in there. That’s the way you have to play. It’s just a matter of being positive and hoping that the batting line-up will click soon.”

One batsman that is certainly not clicking for Sri Lanka is Tillekeratne Dilshan. He’s scored just 58 runs in his last 4 T20I’s, a far cry from the form that saw him become one of the most feared openers in the game. Mathews though, while concerned about his lack of form, was certain that Dilshan, who will turn 40 later this year, will eventually come good. Mathews also called on the younger members of the team to step up and share the burden of responsibility with the senior players in the team.

“Everybody hits a rough patch, he’s had a few rough patches here and there and his last few innings were not very good. But as I keep saying, we all need to take responsibility; it’s not only the seniors. The selectors and captain have picked a squad which they think is capable of winning, and we have to go out there, show faith in the players we have and move forward.

“We haven’t clicked yet and it will take a bit of time for the younger guys to start performing. We just have to be patient; but unfortunately this is not the right time to be patient.”


Share This Article


1. All comments will be moderated by the Daily FT Web Editor.

2. Comments that are abusive, obscene, incendiary, defamatory or irrelevant will not be published.

3. We may remove hyperlinks within comments.

4. Kindly use a genuine email ID and provide your name.

5. Spamming the comments section under different user names may result in being blacklisted.


Today's Columnists

Laurels of ‘Living Together’: Refreshing reflections

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

It was a memorable evening with a mega gathering for a meaningfully different reason. It was not just another book launch with ego-boosting speeches about the author. It was also not an event where a popular politician coming late and preaching about

The fate of the rupee: Central Bank is caught with ‘Devil’s Alternative’

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Not all are losing when the rupee depreciates The recent depreciation of the rupee against the US dollar in the market has apparently driven the entire nation to a panic mode. While it had been a field day for the media and opposition law makers, the

Southbound rupee and northbound CoL

Tuesday, 25 September 2018

The Sri Lankan Rupee hit a record low of 170 per $ last week, and the Minister of Finance warns of further depreciation. This is inevitable given the chaotic state of the nation’s economy. While the rupee turns south, CoL (cost of living) has no o

In the desert of Tamil films, actor Sivaji Ganesan was an oasis

Saturday, 22 September 2018

‘Indian Film,’ first published in 1963 and co-authored by former Columbia University Professor Erik Barnouw and his student Dr. Subrahmanyam Krishnaswamy, is considered a seminal study of the evolution and growth of Indian cinema. The book is cit

Columnists More