Batting coach, Thilan Samaraweera believes that Sri Lanka is on the right track to getting the ideal batting combinations blending in all three formats of the game in the near future. Particularly in view of the 2019 Cricket World Cup players are being further fine-tuned so as to importantly having a surplus of potential player resources to draw from.
(Q). The batsmen did click as a unit during the Bangladesh tour in all formats. Your comments?
(A). I believe we have made good ground in a short time. The Bangladesh tour has proved it. I must stress that the head coach, Chandika Hathurusinghe’s input made my job easy. During the successful Bangladesh tour, head coach, Chandika Hathurusinghe and I accentuated on fixing the player mind-set. That was a key area we addressed. The batsmen are very talented and there isn’t so much to be done in respect of their techniques. It is really the player mind-set that we addressed.
(Q). Was this achieved at concentrated net practices?
(A). We increase workouts in the nets. Also spoke to the players at length and conditioned them mentally on how to go about in the middle.
(Q). Would you like to single out any performers during the Bangladesh tour?
(A). I wouldn’t like to mention individual players. But as a whole the batsmen clicked down the line. That team contribution reaped the overall series success we achieved in the test, ODI and T20 series’.
(Q). You stressed on having a player surplus which the head coach and you are keen on particularly in gearing for the 2019 world cup. Could you elaborate on that?
(A). Yes. The ideal build up is to have adequate player resources available. The head coach and I are working on that area so as to eradicate injuries and have the best equation of players on hand. There are three key players injury side-lined in Angelo Mathews, Kusal Janith Perera and Asela Gunaratne. We aim to have them all back in top gear by next April. It is not only in the batting, overall players are being prepared to be fully fit also addressing the bowling department where Nuwan Pradeep and Dushmantha Chameera among others would be back on track”.
(Q). Could you elaborate on the stated plan to have a player surplus to draw from going into the 2019 world cup?
(A). “Yes. We are looking with open options. There are no fixed positions as such. It can change from time to time going strictly on the form of players. The very best would be accordingly slotted in. Creating healthy competition would produce the best.”
By Srian Obeyesekere