World Cup 2019: Sri Lanka pitches in with Cardiff complaint after edging out Afghanistan

Sri Lanka was made to battle hard for victory over Afghanistan, and later expressed disappointment over the state of the wicket in Cardiff.

Angelo Mathews and Thisara Perera celebrate a dismissal on Tuesday. Photo: AFP

Sri Lanka coach Chandika Hathurusingha complained the pitch in Cardiff was "too green" after his team's scrambled victory over Afghanistan at the Cricket World Cup.

Sri Lanka will be back in action against Pakistan in Bristol on Friday, and when asked about his team's batting failings so far in the tournament, Hathurusingha was quick to point to the playing conditions.

He said: "The two pitches that we got here is not ideal for ODI cricket for my mind. If you look at the other teams, other wickets, all the wickets look a little more brown or whiter than this one. This one is too green."

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He nevertheless was confounded by Sri Lanka's collapse. "Very hard to explain," he said. "We were in a very good position at one stage. I think the wicket is such, it's very difficult to start I think.

"When a batsman is there it looks like an easy wicket to bat on, but we lose one wicket and then we lose three wickets in one over. So a lot of tentative shots.

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"We were lacking confidence; what happened lately for us. So I think batters were a little bit tentative at the start. That caused a few dismissals, and then the other guys put the panic button on and we also had a suicidal run out. We allowed them to come into the game."

'Difficult wicket'

Afghanistan captain Gulbadin Naib, whose side faces New Zealand next on Saturday, also spoke about the state of the pitch. He said: "If you compare this wicket to the [one in] Bristol, it's a difficult wicket. It's a totally different wicket today. It's a cloudy day and also in the middle two hours of rain, so the conditions were suitable for the seamers, but especially in the start the seamers didn't bowl well for us, I think.

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"So the first 10 overs we didn't bowl in the right areas, so we are missing something there. But in the middle we got it right and got them for 200 something, but still they scored a lot on this kind of surface. It's too much."