Series not yet over, says Dinesh Chandimal

The Sri Lanka captain hoped for a turnaround in his team’s fortunes in the third and final Test against India in Pallekele.

Ravindra Jadeja’s omission “gives us a bit of confidence,” says Dinesh Chandimal.   -  AFP

With his back to the wall and a bat bereft of runs, Dinesh Chandimal yearns for a turnaround in his team’s fortunes. In the pre-match press-conference here on Friday, the Sri Lanka captain said that his men are ‘hoping to win’ the third and final Test.

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“We are two down but we still are a really good team. If we can win this game, we can get more confidence and go forward,” he said. “The series is not yet over. As a captain, I don't like to lose,” he added.

Chandimal conceded that the team-management is struggling to put a right combination on the park: “The manager and selectors cannot get the right combination, especially if you lose players like Rangana (Herath), Nuwan Pradeep and Asela (Gunaratne). They are good players. We are struggling because of that also but we don’t want to give excuses.”

'Confident'

The host skipper mentioned that the pep talk by Aravinda de Silva, a few days ago, has boosted the squad’s morale. “He is a legend and one of the greatest batsman that Sri Lanka has ever produced. We had a chat with him three days ago and after that the players look confident,” Chandimal said.

Asked about the pitch, the captain replied: “I haven't had a look at the wicket because of the rain. Most of the time, we get seaming wickets here. So maybe it suits fast bowlers. We haven't yet decided our team because of the weather.”

Chandimal said that Herath will be missed but at the same time, he hoped that fast bowlers Lahiru Kumara and Vishwa Fernando grab their chances. The home team’s leader admitted that Ravindra Jadeja’s absence will aid Sri Lanka: “He is the No. 1 bowler at the moment. It (his absence) gives us a bit of confidence.”