Tillakaratne Dilshan, Sri Lanka's Twenty20 captain, admitted his side's indiscipline in the field cost them the first Twenty20 international played at home. India won by three wickets with four balls to spare after Sri Lanka had the game under control at the start of the 16th over, with India struggling at 115 for 7.
"We bowled too many wides and we were not upto the mark on the field," Dilshan said. "We should have cut down many runs. In this type of game if you make mistakes you cannot come back after that.
"Initially we got a good start, but in the final three overs our batsmen managed only about 23 runs [19 actually]. We were at least ten or more runs short. The bowlers did a good job but they gave away 16 extras. If you take the difference between the two teams the extras made the difference."
Dilshan said five seniors were rested to give the consistent performers on the domestic circuit a chance to impress ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in June. Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis and Farveez Maharoof were the ones rested.
"If the five players had played, the result could have been different, but the selectors took this opportunity to give exposure to some of the lesser known players keeping an eye on the next World Twenty20," Dilshan said. "I am very happy with the way they played. They made some small mistakes on the field and that is why we lost today. If we can rectify those mistakes we can look forward to performing well in England."
When asked why he persisted with his fast bowlers when Jehan Mubarak and Sanath Jayasuriya had four overs left, Dilshan said he didn't want to bring them on when the left-handers were batting. Dilhara Fernando was brought back into the attack but ended up conceding 25 from his last two overs. Lasith Malinga too suffered at the hands of Irfan Pathan and Yusuf Pathan as he leaked 17 off eight balls.