C’wealth Bank series begins on Friday at MCG:
Lanka’s one day reputation at stake
Coach Graham Ford exudes confidence:
The Sri Lankan squad for the Commonwealth Bank one-day series arrived
in Melbourne, confident that they can live up to their one-day
reputation and bring down the Australians in the five-match series
beginning at the MCG on Friday. Although the team, has been beaten 3-0
in the Test sees, the inclusion of new players will help them to begin
the series, with the first one in Melbourne with a positive frame of
mind. Coach Graham Ford who has been working hard with the team made
particular mention of Ajantha Mendis and Lasith Malinga. New and fresh
faces are welcome, especially when things have not gone well. It is good
to have top quality one day payers coming into the system, said the
In good form
There is something to be positive about with some of the Test players
who will be playing in the limited over bashes having found good form.
Ford says that they have to regroup quickly and get focused on the
Sangakkara’s absence has given the opportunity for a couple of young
players to come good. The Lankans would have loved to have Sangakkara,
but his injury has ruled him out. The Lankans are very efficient in
one-day cricketers as they showed in the tri-series in Australia last
year which also featured India. The Lankans have some good skillful
players. The Lankans could take some confidence by the fact that some of
Australia’s top players will be missing either though injury or are
being rested for the first two internationals.
Players missing are Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey, David Warner and
Matthew Wade. Wade made a typical one-day hundred in the Sydney Test.
Ford has asked top players to concentrate on the game. He says that
Lankans should not be worried whatever team Aussies put on the field.
But the coach said that a couple of players Australia has fronted up are
According to Ford, off spinner Ajantha Mendis is not guaranteed a
place because the first choice will be the most successful bower in the
recent Test series against Australia Rangana Herath.
Mendis has not played in Australia before and the Australian batsmen
will not be able to read which way his cocktail of deliveries go,
especially his carom ball and might find difficulty in playing him.
Ford said that Herath and Mendis are high class bowlers, but that
Mendis’ selection will depend on the nature of the wicket. But the
mystery spinner can come good on any surface.
The Lankans are a bit worried about the fitness of Shamindra Eranga
and Nuwan Kulesekera. Eranga is recovering from a sprained ankle playing
football on the eve of the Sydney Test and Kulesekera is nursing a rib
The Sri Lankans have a second mystery spinner in the young Akila
Dhananjaya, a Mahela Jayawardene find, and he too will come into the
frame when the selectors sit to pick the team for the first one-dayer.