Sri Lanka v Bangladesh, only Twenty20, Pallekele March 30, 2013

Pressure on SL to end on high - Chandimal


Sri Lanka's new Twenty20 captain Dinesh Chandimal has admitted there is significant pressure on the hosts to finish the home series against Bangladesh on a high note, ahead of the one-off Twenty20 in Pallekele on Sunday. The hosts had been expected to win each series comprehensively, but could only draw the ODI series 1-1, and allowed Bangladesh to draw a Test against Sri Lanka, for the first time.

Chandimal is now set to lead a young, inexperienced side, which will feature at least one debutant, as six uncapped Twenty20 players have been named in the 16-man squad. They will likely play four top-order batsmen with less than 15 matches' experience, and two specialist bowlers who have each played less than five Twenty20s.

"Bangladesh won the last match and will be in a good mental state. But our players have got a big chance here and they will hopefully take that opportunity," Chandimal said. "It's a lot of pressure, but I like to play with that pressure. As a cricketer, there has to be pressure when we play, because that's when we can truly overcome challenges. We never underestimated Bangladesh, because they are an improving side in world cricket.

"I have to be content with this team, because as youngsters, this is the kind of tour that they should be given opportunities in. When you are playing your first or second match, it's better if you play teams like Bangladesh and Zimbabwe and then get the confidence to play big matches against Australia and England. It's good if they can learn from their time with the seniors and take their cricket forward."

Chandimal has never captained a national team at age-group level, but he had had a superlative season as captain of Ananda College, in Colombo, where he led his side to an unprecedented 13 outright wins in 2008. He was one of several candidates for Test captaincy as well, despite his youth, but eventually Angelo Mathews was given the role, and Chandimal made vice-captain.

"I was captain in Under-19 and U-15 teams as well, in a few provincial matches. This is a great challenge, because captaining the national team is not something everyone can do. We need to talk to all our players, of every level of experience and figure out how we are going to improve and win more matches for our country.

"We don't have the experienced players like Kumar Sangakkara and Tillakaratne Dilshan, who played well in the last two series. But I think there are great young players like Dilshan Munaweera and Kusal Perera. This is a great opportunity for the young players." Chandimal singled out Nasir Hossain as a particular threat among the opposition batsmen, and said Sri Lanka had grown wary of his strengths during the tour. Nasir walloped 33 runs from 27 deliveries in the third ODI, to propel his side to victory, and had struck 73 not out from 59 deliveries to close out the innings in the first ODI as well, in addition to the Test ton he scored in Galle.

"Bangladesh's batsmen have improved a lot from how they were before. Nasir Hossain has been the batsman who has batted the best in the ODI series, and he's been consistent throughout the tour, so we've got a plan for him. We've got plans for all the others as well. We're hoping that tomorrow we can come through in those situations, and showcase our talent."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Shabbir on March 31, 2013, 13:02 GMT

    To ALL SL fans. Firstly I want to wish you good luck in the T20. More importantly I need to remind you that this game IS VERY significant for T20 ranking. BD is ranked 9 and SL is Ranked NUMBER ONE. So a SL defeat will cause SL to plummet 5 places in the rankings. Obviously the SL selectors have are selecting to a team to win NOT to lose! So please can we cut out all the talk about an inexperienced side etc, blah blah. Its good to see Nasser Hossain being talked about by SL players and fans alike. Also bear in Mind that SL lost to BD in Dhaka and again the other day so if they win today well all I can say not bad and very consistent. Tamims century int he first ODI showed he could handle (not playing today) SL Bowlers, Abdul Razzaks 5 wicket haul shows he can do damage to SL batsmen. SO give BD credit, SL fans... SL will be more upset about the results than BD will be.

  • Dummy4 on March 31, 2013, 8:06 GMT

    SL young stars will thrash BD in all departments.

  • Tania on March 31, 2013, 5:47 GMT

    BD Fans even with top 3 players (Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal and Mashrafe Murtoza) BD hasn't won any major tournaments even after 15yrs....all teams wants to experiment their juniors against BD which SL is doing now..

  • Dummy4 on March 31, 2013, 4:38 GMT

    We admire BD's last ODI victory though as sri lankans.

    But what BD fans are doing here is not the best of thing . If u are going to be gentlemen of cricket you have to earn it.Not just taking the other team at bay. Till then you wont be gentleman.remember that.SL's have earned that right throughout the world due to that.we don't make any other team at the bottom in our comment or anything after a victory as majority of other south asians do.

    In my opinion the present sl T20 side in lack of experience at the international level than the BD's.Bt SL do have got the talent for sure.Eranga and Mali will have a a great deal of rights to perform.Hope openers will give a blistering start.

    But i guess this team of SL have got the potential to win the t20. go onn buddies show them what u are made of!

  • Javed on March 31, 2013, 3:24 GMT

    Bangladesh will win this match easily without their star players. Good luck tigers.

  • Prashan on March 31, 2013, 2:58 GMT

    Please finish off today with a victory.

  • Dhanushka on March 31, 2013, 1:34 GMT

    Chandi..100% Correct..we have to give the youngsters a chance when we are playing with teams like Ban, Zim, Irl....

  • Dummy4 on March 31, 2013, 0:48 GMT

    for BD fans I would like to say first, you can't compare Shakib, Tamim, mashrafe with class of Dilshan, Sanga, Mahela have...Shakib, Tamim, mashrafe are only names, but Dilshan, Sanga, and Mahela are legends in the cricket...we saw tamim played 1st Odi and you lost the match...nothing happen with him in the side. also shakib still not in a class of Sanga, Mahela, Dilshan... so without these 3 and kula Sl team like there C team..Bd win 2nd Odi by luck..not with also IRL can win against england once..but not every only win you get by luck in this series...and SL making it's transforming part on this no worry for draw a test match..and unlikely lost in Odi...

  • Dummy4 on March 30, 2013, 19:43 GMT

    please bd fans do not talk too much,just say what is the reality! remeber srilanka still is far better team in any field in anyformat bangladesh only started to play well since 2012( i am also bd fan but always love to say reality and fact.

  • Chatura on March 30, 2013, 19:32 GMT

    Ranking... Top team .... all those things not gonna valid to T20. this is just a one game. so let young sri lankan team to preform with out pressure.

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