2017 ICC Champions Trophy: Angelo Mathews Reveals Kumar Sangakkara’s Visit Boosts Sri Lanka Camp
Sri Lankan skipper Angelo Mathews revealed it was the former stalwart of Sri Lankan cricket Kumar Sangakkara, who had boosted the morale of the youngsters while making his appearance during Lion’s training session ahead of India game of the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy on Thursday (June 8) in Group B fixture.
The Matale-born Sangakkara, who is the part of ICC Champions Trophy commentary panel, has further given vital tips to the youngsters before Mathews stated the former batsman has set the plinth to infuse confidence among young team — to steamroll India on a placid surface which was touted to help fast bowlers owing to the tinge of green.
“He [Kumar Sangakkara] taught us good things about how to play on these tracks,” Sangakkara was quoted as saying by AFP.
It’s pertinent to note, the ace left-handed batsman, Sangakkara has been playing in England for county club Surrey where he has smashed four consecutive centuries.
The 38-year-old Sangakkara has imparted the knowledge to the youngsters during the session which was lauded by Mathews, who played a significant role with the bat after scoring an unbeaten half-century.
“The guys met him, took a lot of advice and went out there and did it today,” Sangakkara maintained.
The 30-year-old Mathews revealed after registering an emphatic win over Team India by seven wickets while chasing down the daunting target of 322 with eight balls to spare, that it was an exciting time to have Sangakkara in the nets to back the Islanders.
“We all look up to him and take advice from him, all the batters,” Sangakkara asserted.
Interestingly, it was Sri Lanka’s joint highest run chase in One-day Internationals, as they’ve had already registered 322 against hosts England at Leeds in 2006.
The interesting facet of the Lankan team is that it’s in the rebuilding phase as the batsman has shown the promise, who are also capable of making most of the willow.
Showing his quality with the bat, the classic Sangakkara has registered 124*, 114, 120, 200 and 84, in his last five innings for Surrey.
After losing the first wicket of Niroshan Dickwella cheaply, Danushka Gunathilaka, who came at the expense of injured Chamara Kapugedera, smashed a crucial 159-run partnership for the second wicket alongside Kusal Mendis.
Mathews remaining unbeaten on 52 off 45 balls as Asela Gunaratne scored 34 off 21 balls which included two fours and two sixes respectively.
Mathews, who has played a huge role while bowling in the past, had tried his level best to make things easier with the bat alongside Asela Gunaratne, whose quickfire knock has helped his side to claim an easy victory.
“Kusal [Perera] met Sanga [Sangakkara] to get some batting tips because he is the king,” Mathews revealed.
After the unexpected win against formidable win which saw youngster playing attacking and positive cricket, Sri Lanka is scheduled to face Pakistan, in the must-win game on Monday (June 12), after amassing two points in two matches.
The interesting facet of the Lankan team is that it’s in rebuilding phase as the batsmen have had shown the enough promise, who are also capable of making most of the willow.
Mathews has featured in 181 One-day Internationals in which he has amassed 4,544 runs and his 111 wickets to his name since making his debut in 2008 against Zimbabwe at Harare.
Tahir Ibn Manzoor
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