No doubt the runs will come from Mathews, Mendis – Sri Lanka batting coach Lewis

The form of Mathews at number five is a concern as is that of the rest of the middle order. Numbers four to seven have contributed just nine — NINE — runs across two innings. Lewis says Mathews feels his game is in a good place, that he has just had two low scores which can happen to anybody. To be fair, Mathews scored 64 against South Africa in the first warm-up game, so isn’t long out of runs but without Chandimal, he is such an important cog in the Sri Lankan wheel. He is one of the players that Lewis was talking about. His team needs more from their former captain. “I’ve got no reason to doubt that the runs will come for him,” said Lewis.

One place above Mathews in the order, Kusal Mendis is having no better time, registering scores of two and nought. His place in this ODI side in such a pivotal position of number four is one of the fault lines in the batting order, given he averages just 27 in 65 matches with only five scores of more than 70 in those games. Without Chandimal, his position is probably secure for the rest of the tournament but his failure to yet nail the 50-over format is not only hampering the team’s performance but also disappointing given Mendis’ consistent and eye-catching displays in the Test arena. “He’s a very talented player. He’s a talented test player,” said Lewis. “The numbers at the moment look good. 50 overs, his numbers aren’t where a player of his ability should be yet…

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