Chandimal says SL faces Australia in full confidence
2019-01-16 at 13:56
A perfect pink ball record and a last-up Test series demolition against Australia has Sri Lanka in a positive mindset ahead of their two Test series down under.
Despite recently being outplayed in a 1-0 series defeat in New Zealand, Sri Lankan captain Dinesh Chandimal says his side comes into the two Test series against Australia with confidence.
The Sri Lankan touring team will play a three-day game against a strong Cricket Australia XI starting at Blundstone arena in Hobart on Thursday.
The match will be played under day-night conditions with a pink ball to replicate the format for the Gabba Test which starts the following Thursday.
The Sri Lankans have requested to use more than 11 players in the match so it will not carry first class status.
”We just want to give the batters a chance to get used to the conditions” Chandimal said.
“We’re going to try out 13 or 14 players”.
Chandimal pointed to Sri Lanka’s perfect two-from-two record in pink ball Tests against Pakistan and more recently the West Indies.
“We all know when it comes to the pink ball it gives the bowlers an advantage, especially at night time. Our bowlers are in great shape so if we can produce an innings of more than 300 from our batting group we give ourselves a really good chance,” he said.
Of further encouragement to the skipper is the fact that Sri Lanka defeated Australia 3-0 in the most recent Test series against the two countries in 2016.
Negating that promising form line is the fact that Sri Lanka has not won a Test match in Australia in 13 attempts dating back to 1989.
In a blow to Sri Lanka’s chances in the series their best performed batsman in New Zealand, Angelo Matthews, has been ruled out of the Australian tour with a hamstring injury.
“This is a really good chance for our younger batsman to perform. We all know how good Angelo is and we will certainly miss him. He did really well in the New Zealand series and has a lot of experience,” Chandimal said.
The skipper indicated that his team had watched the Indian bowlers very closely in their recent series win over Australia and took some notes.
“The Indian bowling unit was really good, especially between overs 40 and 80. That’s why they won the series. As a team we want to do just as well as that,” he said.
Australian Associated Press