We came with a positive mind to win – Chandimal | Daily News
Determined to win back ODI place after being left out

We came with a positive mind to win – Chandimal

Wednesday: Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal said his team’s approach on the fifth and final day of the third Test against India was to try and win the match and square the series at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium here on Wednesday.

“We didn’t come to draw the game, we came to win. That’s why we changed our approach in the middle. If we had come to draw the game definitely we could have lost it,” said Chandimal after Sri Lanka had denied the number one ranked Test team victory by playing out for a honourable draw.

Sri Lanka left a target to 410 to chase finished on 299-5 after resuming at their overnight score of 31-3. India won the three-match series 1-0 with their victory in the second Test at Nagpur. It is the highest fourth innings total by a visiting team to India beating the 276-5 by West Indies in Delhi in 1987. That match the West Indies won.

“It was a really good series apart from the second game. After the second game we sat down as a team especially with the batting unit we discussed how to get our approach right for the third match,” explained Chandimal.

“Before the third Test we had two practice sessions and what we put in at practices we finally executed in the middle and delivered when we went to bat out today. I am really happy that after the second Test the way we batted in this game.”

It was Chandimal’s first innings career best century 164 coupled with Angelo Mathews’ hundred that gave Sri Lanka some breathing space to put up a good fight to India. In the process of scoring 36 in the second innings Chandimal became the fifth batsmen for the calendar year to pass 1000 Test runs after Cheteswar Pujara, Dean Elgar, Dimuth Karunaratne and Virat Kohli.

Talking of the tough conditions they had to undergo in the first four days with players falling ill by inhaling the air pollution, Chandimal said, “It was a tough time for us as a team. We are not used to this kind of conditions in Sri Lanka, you won’t get this much pollution but we need to play the game at the same time. So after the first two days we had a discussion with the team and said we need to forget about the conditions and play the game. That’s what everyone did. We learnt how to face such situations in the future.”

“We got so many youngsters for this series and we have a really good attitude. If that is there the best results will come. If you have players with bad attitudes you won’t get good results. That’s what I am looking at from this team. With good attitude and discipline we can move forward with this team,” he said.

Commenting on the performances of Dhananjaya de Silva and Roshen Silva, Chandimal said, “It was a really good innings from Dhananjaya. We picked him after the West Indies A team tour where he played some good innings. We had to trust playing him at no. 3 and he also brought us a bowling option as well. He took his opportunity with both hands.

“It was tough to leave out the vice-captain (Lahiru Thirimanne). It’s a tough call. Dhananjaya and Roshen deserved to take the opportunities especially Roshen. He’s scored more than 6000 runs in domestic cricket, he played in the A team and scored heavily. Both deserved their places. It’s unfortunate for Thirimanne.”

Chandimal said that he was determined to regain his place in the one-day team after being left out for the upcoming three ODIs against India.

“I got enough matches in ODIs against Pakistan where I didn’t perform well. I like to play ODIs because I know I can do far better. I am working hard on my game especially in ODIs. I need to change some of my technique and I will use the time on my hands to become a good ODI player,” Chandimal said.


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