Q. Angelo, there’s a feeling in the cricket world that Sri Lanka is the worst fielding team in the world. Given today’s performance, is there any reason why you disagree with that?
ANGELO MATHEWS: Looking at today’s performance, well, I thought we were pathetic once again. If we had held those catches, it would have been a different story today, especially at very crucial times — first over, and towards the end, where we let go of Sarfraz was very crucial. Being an international team — well, I thought we’ve improved a little bit, but today was not really our day.
Q. We keep hearing these talks about — you said, Asanka Gurusinha said that the fielding is improving, but it’s been a problem for some time now. Do you think there’s been a genuine effort to improve really?
ANGELO MATHEWS: Yes. Well, the boys have worked extremely hard. Today, yes, we dropped three catches, but there has been a genuine effort from the boys and from the support staff, and we’ve expressed a lot about our fielding, and we’ve talked about a lot, and we put a lot of energy on our fielding. So, yes, there has been a genuine effort on fielding.
Q. The dropped catches were one factor, but do you think that Sri Lanka were perhaps short of runs? Would you attribute that to poor batting, or would you say that Pakistan’s bowling was fantastic?
ANGELO MATHEWS: Yeah, I mean, when you lose a game, you can always say it was poor batting, it was poor fielding, and it was poor bowling, but I thought — you know, it was kind of a funny wicket today. Yes, we were 30, 40 runs short, obviously, but I’m really proud of the guys, the way they came out and tried to defend that. We had that in our bags, but unfortunately, the fielding let us down.
Yes, I mean, the — I should mention the bowlers’ effort. They batted really well as well, and they came out and bowled really well as well. Unfortunately, they couldn’t win us the game, but really proud of the bowlers, the way they bowled and batted today.
Q. Angelo, have you got any regrets over the balance of your side? You brought in Dhananjaya, who’s been in the country 48 hours, ahead of maybe one of the spinners in your squad. Any regrets, when you got toward the end there, you didn’t have another front line bowler to turn to?
ANGELO MATHEWS: Not really. We had to play the extra batsman on this. We had to play the seventh batter because we knew there was some grass on the wicket. We’re not sure of the toss, whether you win it or not. And also, if we are bowling well, bowling first, we had the four seamers, and if we are batting first, we had to have that seven batters.
Unfortunately, it didn’t go our way. Yes, it wasn’t easy for Dhananjaya to just walk into these conditions and start scoring runs, we understand that, but we didn’t have any batsmen left in the camp because Upul Tharanga was obviously suspended, so we were left with very minimal options for us.
Q. Do you think we’ll see Lasith Malinga in a global tournament again?
ANGELO MATHEWS: I’m not really sure. He hasn’t spoken anything about it, but he’s been a great servant for Sri Lanka cricket. He’s been fantastic. We saw the effort that he put in today as well.
You know, it was unfortunate that we dropped his catches as well today, and he would have been a different bowler, but still he came out and gave his heart out, and, yeah, he is a champion bowler for us.
Q. Do you think the toss was a factor in the result? You actually got off to a good start.
ANGELO MATHEWS: Not really. I mean, yeah, it can go both ways. You can see the toss was also crucial because there was a little bit of dampness in the wicket. There was a little bit of green grass on the wicket. But it was a funny wicket. Even batting second wasn’t that easy. It was stopping a little bit for the seamers.
So, yes, we obviously didn’t have enough runs on the board, but I thought — well, the toss wasn’t a very crucial factor today, but, you know, considering the fact that we lost a few early wickets and we consolidated, and we got ourselves to a very good place and lost our way in the middle once again.