Bangladesh v Sri Lanka, 3rd ODI, Mirpur February 22, 2014

'Kusal showed maturity today' - Mathews


Kusal Perera's well-paced maiden ODI century helped Sri Lanka clinch the ODI series 3-0 and Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews said the opener had shown maturity to set up the win in the absence of the team's senior players.

"Kusal Perera showed lot of maturity today," Mathews said. "We didn't have senior guys and someone had to step up. I am glad that he and Dinesh Chadimal did. He doesn't change his game, at any point. We have always told him to believe in himself and he batted brilliantly.

"We never say anything to any of our batters unless it is absolutely needed. We always told him [Perera] to enjoy and bat the way he does because if he gets the start, he will win more games for us."

The opener began quietly but opened up with a four and two sixes. However, he did not hit a boundary between the 10th and 23rd overs when Sri Lanka needed to rebuild after quick wickets. Along with Dinesh Chandimal, Perera ensured Sri Lanka were able to control the required run rate in spite of a few quiet overs.

While his first 50 came off 80 balls, the next fifty runs took 38 balls as the batsman surpassed his previous best of 64 against Pakistan. It was also his second fifty-plus score against Bangladesh.

Sri Lanka were also helped by Suranga Lakmal, who bowled the most economical spell of his 21-match ODI career. He gave away 24 runs and took two wickets, and his use of the crease, lengths and change of pace were apt in all situations.

"Suranga [Lakmal] was brilliant today. I thought he bowled eight overs for eight runs. We didn't have Lasith Malinga so he had the burden of bowling well and he did exactly that," Mathews said. "I am very pleased with the way he bowled today, as well as Dinesh Chandimal who ran into good form today."

According to Mathews, Sri Lanka's rally from 67 for 8 to an eventually match-winning total of 180 in the first ODI was the turning point of the series.

"We had the fighting spirit," Mathews said. "When we were 67 for 8, most of you guys would have thought we would have given up the game but we hung in there.

"Thisara [Perera] played a really good knock and from there onwards it was just going on. We always believed in ourselves, believed in our team spirit. We never give up. We are really pleased with the guys."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Nilanka on February 25, 2014, 6:19 GMT

    @sysubrceq0 Yeah your right it's still early days. I'm talking about how well he batted in Aus not the final scores. That 22 not out was in a fast pitch to a good bowling attack under pressure and in a low scoring match.

  • Naimur on February 24, 2014, 11:28 GMT

    While Sri Lanka batted well, Bangladesh bowling is very ordinary due to their coaches who have been very poor.

  • Abdul on February 24, 2014, 11:08 GMT

    Bangladesh need to get rid of Razzaq and Rubel Hossain who are always very expensive

  • Afsar on February 24, 2014, 4:28 GMT

    @nilb- kusal may be a good player but the way u boast abt him is like he is already a great player. Against Aus is he good? 22 highest score and one 50+ with pak thats all. Less than 10 avg against india, england, nz and SA. His 3 50+ scores are in subcontinent and 2 against BAN. For now he is below avg player lets see how he turns out to be in future.

  • Dummy4 on February 24, 2014, 3:36 GMT

    Lakmal should have been regular ODI player. He will be a good supporter to Malinga.

  • murali on February 23, 2014, 22:42 GMT

    @nilb well india is beaten by bangladesh but ur srilanka is beaten by every team and i think u lost all 3 matches

  • Afsar on February 23, 2014, 22:08 GMT

    @Sinhabahu - outside subcontinent SL is more competant than India? Can you tell how many series SL won outside subcontinent exclude ZIM?

  • Nilanka on February 23, 2014, 19:28 GMT

    @neanderthal I'm talking about Kusal Perera's batting in a article about him not about IND. You are talking about IND in a article about a SL player in a SL vs BAN match. So who's jealous here? Are u afraid IND is going to be smashed by BAN again?

  • Nilanka on February 23, 2014, 19:23 GMT

    @neanderthal I was talking about Kusal Perera's batting against good teams in my answer. About what you said: Given the days with test status SL has achieved better results than most. One world cup and countless finals. IND with all the IPL money and a huge population cannot even find a decent fast bowler and the batsmen can hit the ball only in dusty flat tracks in their own backyard. If you were not born yesterday you would've known that IND has been the favorite punching bag of BAN, PAK and SL. Jayasuriya's favorite bowlers were INDian "fast" bowlers.

  • Dummy4 on February 23, 2014, 13:25 GMT

    Damn it one pleasing presentation from the Sri Lankan Captain after sometime... that's the spirit boys..keep it up..

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