We dug our own grave - Coach Hashan Tillakaratne | Daily News


SL’s U-19 World Cup Review:

We dug our own grave - Coach Hashan Tillakaratne

Sri Lankan U-19 coach Hashan Tillakaratne pointed fingers at no one, but at their selves for their abysmal show at the U-19 World Cup finishing at tenth-place and failing to convert the Plate final of what would’ve been compensation and consolation.

“I’m not afraid to say we had committed mistakes,” he came hard on his unit.

Speaking on finishing in tenth place, Tillakaratne went on, “It is very disappointing. It’s been a long journey. We worked very hard for one-and-a-half years towards achieving the world cup. Our theme was chasing the dream, but we couldn’t achieve what we expected. But, life goes on. As a coach, I’m sure I can give 100%. But, the results are not guaranteed.”

Asked what lies next, “We need to asses our coaching style. We need to tighten coaching, pretty much. We must criticise our own selves. There was one or two mistakes we’ve done. We have to go back to our drawing board and see how to improve ourselves and move forward.”

He also added, they are looking at developing players. Tillakaratne was certain of five to six guys who will play for the Sri Lanka national side very soon, while not writing-off others, who are not very far.

“Some of them are playing for their schools and some playing for clubs. I’m sure, if they can apply of what we have coached to them they have a good future,” he said.

Tillakaratne emphasized, the U-19 lads need to be given exposure of rubbing shoulders with international coaches and players. Drawing an example from India, he said seven players are part of the famous Indian Premier League (IPL). Through that he also hinted, sooner the Lanka Premier League gets up-and-running the better it is.

“In the case of India it is Ranji trophy, while for the British it is county cricket. At the age of 15, they are provided that handy exposure of mixing and mingling with international players,” Tillakaratne said.

While England returned the sweet revenge of beating Sri Lanka in the Plate Final after being beaten in Tri-Series final in West Indies, the latter failed to convert of what would’ve been a win of pride.

Tillakaratne pinned strong hopes on captain Nipun Dananjaya who has the potential to become the next Kumar Sangakkara.

“If he’s looked after well, he will be the next Sangakkara. Give him time and in the next 10 to 15-years down the line, he will rack up 10,000-runs in One-dayers and Test,” said Tillakaratne.

Of the four matches Sri Lanka played in the group stage, they won two (Japan and Nigeria) and lost two (India and New Zealand).

However, Lankans came agonisingly close to a win against the Kiwis, only to lose off the penultimate ball.

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