Senior Sri Lankan batsman Dinesh Chandimal on Friday admitted that his side cannot always use ‘transition phase’ as an excuse for the team not doing well in recent times. (STATS || POINTS TABLE || FIXTURES)
Ahead of their World T20 cricket match against England on Saturday Chandimal blamed on “inexperience of middle-order” for their inconsistent performances of late but he added that players need to “put their hands up and perform”.
“You cannot always say transition. We need to put our hands up. We will give our best shot in the next game,” Chandimal said when asked whether a team comprising of Tillakaratne Dilshan, him, Chamara Kapugedara, Angelo Mathews and Thisara Perera can be termed as inexperienced.
“We are struggling with middle order. In big games, we don’t have experience. The guys are working hard in practice. We are looking to do well in our next game,” Chandimal said.
He said Saturday’s game against England and the next against South Africa will give his side an opportunity to do better.
“We are concerned with our middle order but we will have a good chance anyway. England’s pacers can be surprise package,” the talented right-hander said.
Chandimal is confident that the slowish Feroze Shah Kotla track will prove to be an advantage for the Sri Lankans considering that scoring will be difficult as compared to the batting-friendly conditions at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
“It’s all about the conditions. Wankhede was a good pitch while this (Kotla) wicket is slow. So we will have a good chance,” he added.
Sri Lanka are playing their third game after a six-day break and Chandimal said it has helped the team to rejuvenate.
“It was a really good break. We discussed what went wrong in the two games. We need to execute our plans and guys are looking forward to the match,” he said.
Chandimal made it clear that the team would look to use its spin strength under Rangana Herath’s leadership to unsettle England team that looked ill at ease against Afghanistan spinners.
“Rangana Herath is a world class bowler. He can cause damage. Even South Africa are struggling against spinners. Vandersay is a surprise package and Sachithra Senanayeke is also good. Yes we expect big things from Rangana as he knows how to handle pressure,” said Chandimal.
He conceded that England are a better side but they have some plans in place.
“We have something up our sleeves. England are a better side with good youngsters. A good score on this kind of track depends on conditions and how one plays the first six overs,” he concluded.