Need to tighten things up: Jayawardene
Mirpur, Mar 13: Chasing a challenging total of 305, Sri Lanka fell 50 runs short against India in their opening match of the Asia Cup in Mirpur. Lanka skipper Mahela Jayawardene gave his side a fighting chance with an aggressive 78-run innings, but the 34-year-old couldn’t quite see his side as India cruised to the win thanks to some intelligent bowling.
Excerpts from Jayawardene’s post-match TV interview
On chasing 305 to win
When you are chasing something like that, the guys who get starts should finish the game off. So [I] probably played a pretty bad shot – shot myself in the foot there – and then immediately in the batting Powerplay we lost two set batsmen. We made quite a lot of mistakes […]; there was nothing wrong with the wicket. It was crucial that we kept our heads together and finished the chase, which we didn’t do.
On the partnership between MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina
Initially I thought they set it up nicely — Gautam [Gambhir] and Virat [Kohli] held the innings well. They had wickets in hand and we knew that they’d come hard at us. I thought we gave 15-20 runs too many; MS and Suresh are good hitters. Our fielding wasn’t up to scratch, so we need to tighten up when playing top teams. We can’t make such mistakes; I think overall we made quite a few mistakes today with the bat, on the field and with the ball. It’s tough when you are making so many mistakes to win a match.
On how Sri Lanka would assess this loss
We still can take a lot of positives out of this game; we’ve had new guys coming in — Suranga [Lakmal] bowled pretty well, [Seekkuge] Prasanna bowled pretty well as well, so a lot of positives. We just need to make sure that we tighten things up. We can’t commit too many mistakes in a tournament like this because we could be out of the tournament. We need to go back, have a good meeting and come back day after against Pakistan.
On his form with the bat
I think I am enjoying batting up the order; I am much more relaxed and I can play my shots. It’s quite easy to bat with [Tillakaratne] Dilshan and Kumar [Sangakkara] later on. But like I said, I am very disappointed with the way I got out today. I could have finished the game off. I have to take a lot of responsibility for that shot.