Sri Lanka cricketing needs more youngsters

First of all, I would like to congratulate the Sri Lankan cricket team, every single member for making it to the final. Without any of them coming to the final would have been next to impossible. So Congratulations LIONS! You did us proud.

The next person that deserves a word of praise is the Captain; Kumar Sangakkara; himself. Without him, none of this would have been possible. His brains, effort and ability made the team perform the way it did. Kudos to Kumar Sangakkara.

Well, like everyone has decided to agree – cricket is just a game. But cricket is more than a game to us Sri Lankans. It’s something that unites every single Sri Lankan from all walks of life. It’s the one thing that puts a smile on our face.

Yesterday’s loss was so disappointing.

Starting with the opening batsmen, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Upul Tharanga – these two always do an outstanding job followed by Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene. After Mahela, there is always a mishap. The maximum number of runs scored after Mahela is 10 or less. The middle order has no strength apart from Mathews.

Once Mathews is injured, it’s a wrap. The team cannot go further because we get bowlers only who aren’t conversant with the bat.

Lets pick a leaf from India (much as am ANTI- India, we have to see the good in the bad). Their middle order is unbelievable. When Sehwag, Sachin, Yuvraj and Gambhir go out, you have Raina or Pathan or even Harbhajan, Zaheer … whereas for Sri Lanka, that’s not the case. We’ve got a shaken middle order.

More so, India exposes every single player of theirs. And most of these players are 30 and below. Sri Lanka doesn’t have any young players who have been groomed or are being groomed. Young players are a must for the team to prosper. We have full capacity to create wonders but the selectors or whoever is in charge is not looking to give an opportunity for other up-coming players to shine.

Just like Sangakkara and Jayawardene were picked from the school teams, we need more youngsters to be picked up and exposed.

Muralitharan has retired from cricket… does that mean our bowling should collapse? NO! We have good bowlers like Ajantha Mendis, Lasith Malinga but there have got to be new lads who can create fear in the opposition team.

Sri Lanka had a commendable fielding and bowling throughout this tournament but in the final there were limited fielders in the pitch. All seemed to be concentrated on one end thus leaving gaps for the Indian fellows to smash away.

The partnership between Tharanga and Dilshan was outstanding against England. Terrific display was put by these two chaps and they need to be credited for that.

Once again, Sangakkara being the captain that he was this tournament deserves utmost appreciation for he pulled a good string of hope amongst us the Lankans. Whenever we saw him, we always knew our team would shine.

Reaching two World Cup finals and not winning is quite disappointing!

The selectors need to consider grooming more young players, exposing them…bringing them into the spot light, giving them every opportunity so that we can have a team that is looked up to. Having players that are about to retire and not having replacements in the vicinity is quite scary.

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