Did you know that Zimbabwe defeated Pakistan and Australia in their warm up matches? That’s insane, right? Not really. They are a formidable T20 side.
Zimbabwe are a team in form and who do they play on Monday the 3rd of May? Sri Lanka.
‘What’s the big deal,’ you ask? After royally messing up an easy win against New Zealand, a defeat to Zimbabwe will mean that our lads will be back home without qualifying for the Super Eight stages. Can you image the heat Sangakkara will have to face if that happens?
The loss to New Zealand can be attributed to the manner we batted against New Zealand in the powerplays. Between Sangakkara and Dilshan they wasted 5 overs. That cost us the match.
Dilshan managed three runs from 19 balls and Sangakkara scratched his way to four from 11 balls. The difference was a score of 150-160 as opposed to the 135 we made.
The wicket may have been slow and low but that only mattered to New Zealand and not us. If our guys are useless on seamer friendly wickets, they were bred on slow low tracks; the wicket is not an excuse.
In fact Ryder and Guptill’s 62 run second wicket partnership had New Zealand cruising towards Sri Lanka’s modest total. It was unprofessional batting by New Zealand that took the match to the final over. Not the condition of the wicket.
After messing up the powerplays, Sangakkara had a point to prove rather than right his own wrongs. He wanted to make sure Jayasuriya would not bat. He made sure his preferred batting line up got ahead of Sanath Jayasuriya. Frankly it was a disgusting move by the captain. Disgusting and disrespectful.
The commentators were shocked at the move. They don’t suffer from Sangakkara’s myopia; he wanted to make sure this is the end of Sanath Jayasuriya, not win the World Cup.
For those who do not know, Sanath Jayasuriya was included in this side by the sports minister when the selectors appeased Sangakkara with a different squad. Media reports suggest that Sangakakra was very annoyed.
Who cares if Sangakkara was annoyed? Do you? Can you find another player with a record and experience to match Jayasuriya in this format? No.
The arguement is that Jayasuriya is out of form, but that same arguement doesn’t apparantly apply to Dilshan or Mahela. When anyone other than the great Jayasuriya is out of form, skipper Sangakkara will play them back into form, or the excuse is "he is just one shot away."
We are not there in the West Indies to please Sangakkara? We are there to win a World Cup! At least there is one thing for certain. Had Sanath failed he would not have wasted 5 overs. That makes a huge difference!