Dasun Shanaka : "We have what it takes to make a mark in the T20 World Cup"

Dasun Shanaka : “We have what it takes to make a mark in the T20 World Cup”

Sri Lanka may have had a terrible year in terms of team building and preparation, and the biggest tests surely lie ahead, but that has failed to diminsh captain Dasun Shanaka’s optimism ahead of the Men’s T20 World Cup. Drawing similarities to the vintage side that won the 2014 tournament, the Sri Lanka captain feels that his current side has similar depth and variety, something he believes could see them potentially go a “long way in this tournament” – even if they lack considerably in terms of experience.

Shanka praises his talented teammates

“If you recall, that squad had a lot of variety and depth. And with the youngsters we have coming through now I feel have the same potential, but the only thing lacking is the experience,” Shanaka said, speaking in a discussion. “If our guys perform to their strengths I feel they can go a long way in this tournament. Our fans in Sri Lanka have been waiting a long time for us to be successful, and I hope we can make them proud.”

“We were not able to perform up to the mark in the last few years, but still the strength of our squad is very good. We’ve got two guys coming from the IPL [Dushmantha Chameera and Wanindu Hasaranga], Kusal Janith [Perera] at the top of the order and Avishka Fernando, who is going well, coming in at No. 4.
 
“We are settled with our batting line-up. We’ve recently changed our line-up a bit – I think we’ve struck a good balance.”
 
Speaking about the new guy Pathum Nissanka, the captain said, “He’s been a guy coming through the system, so we know how capable he is. Still, when you come to the biggest stage you have to make your mark by scoring good runs. I feel he will make this tournament his own and make it count.”
 
“Going with two main fast bowlers, they give a lot of quality to the squad. And Associate nations, they don’t face a lot of 140+ fast bowlers.
 
“Obviously losing Pradeep is a concern. He had been bowling brilliantly over the last six months, and we were counting on him during this tournament, but still what we can get from Lahiru Kumara and Dushmantha is massive.”

Dasun Shanaka talks about their spinners

“He [Hasaranga] has been amazing over the last two years, and now he’s sitting in the No. 2 spot [in the rankings]. He’s very hard to pick at times, because he bowls from a lower angle. Meanwhile, along with Wanindu, we also have Maheesh Theekshana – that’s two young, exciting talents. Going forward I feel that they will do a really good job for the team.”
 
Talking about the new addition in the staff in the form of Mahela Jayawardene as consultant coach, the 30 year old said, “He’s been amazing over the years, and tactically he’s brilliant. As a captain, he’s been giving me a lot of support in the field. For me, tactically he’s the best in the business. He’s been a real help to all of us.

Avishkar Govardhane is a Sports Editor and enthusiast, working here at Clout News covering the latest Cricket News.

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