[Discussion Thread] Sri Lanka in UAE and Pakistan 2017

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Another crazy test and another SL win!

Who would have thought SL would have won this series 2-0? Who wins both tests after making 120 and 96 in two of the 4 innings? Well SL does and its an astonishing turn around of form and honestly I can barely believe the result. Two big factors in the two test is of course runs. SL made 400+ in both tests and critically, based on two batters getting big hundreds. It's a long time since a batter got a big hundred and this makes all the difference.

Dimuth has moved in to a different league in the last few months. I thought he was playing for his spot against India but 5 tests later, he is in a different league. Dickwella again vital runs in both innings as did Herath. Dilruwan had an excellent game with a 50 and 8 wickets and was unlucky to miss on the man of match award. Worth noting that the pace men also got a couple of vital wickets with some excellent deliveries.

Not in my wildest dreams did I expect this outcome. Even after the first test, I never thought we would win the second and all credit to the boys. Couple of disappointments and the biggest being Thiri. I thought Pradeep had a poor series as did Mendis. I thought both Gamage and Sadeera made good starts and deserve the next test regardless which is most promising.

Absolutely vital points gained from the win too which keeps us afloat and desperately needed. All in all hugely satisfactory series after the recent shockers and plenty to smile about.

Now for the limited overs series where we need to make some serious adjustments and get some form.

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Brilliant come back from the

Brilliant come back from the dead

Kudos to management, new selectors backing the players, the high visibility of management at the grounds taking notes so intent, Gura looks to be the hardest working selector ever, Hashan, rumesh and Pothas.

What magnificent attacking captaincy from Chandi, looking for wickets, aggressive field placing and making changes as needed. Even the start of the day in trying to strangle them down the leg side with pradeep didn't work so he changed tactics. So far kinda lukewarm re captaincy, but, this was the best 2 test imaginative captaincy since Maiyya. So pro active, so involved, encouraging his bowlers. The back to the wall innings when all looked lost in Dubai set the tone for grit,

This was the best and most disciplined and consistent bowling effort from Lanka in years. Other than that awesome Wahab spell, both Lucky and Fernando out bowled the better pak seamers, and Gamage was perfect, to the point that the captain favored him over the 2 front line bowlers. All spinners, sandakan included, bowled tightly in both tests, quite pleased with Dilruwan effort.

Fielders were aggressive and showed intent, a few tough catches were grasped, but overall such a vast improvement with captain leading from front.

Dickwella excellent behind and in front of stumps, showed lit more discipline, He has moved to permanency in tests.

Batsmen. Wow 2, 400 plus scores in 1st innings. Brilliant Duluth, good from ChandI (each of them could have batted longer in tgge 2 they didn't review) and Dickwella. If there is a single weakness, this is it, as they faltered in 2nd innings, plus the other 3 didn't make it. However when Mathews and asela are back 2 more arrows, Mendis will be back. The only change should be to replace Kaushal- the2 to look at are DDS and sad Sam

7+4 or 6+5. The latter is an aggressive option and helped us to win, but, Dilruwan, despite runs is an 8 and not a 7, and h e is followed by bunnies with white tails showing each time y h e.g. walk out. If we have 6 awesome batsmen, could be different, but I am more inclined to bat asela as batting all rounder at 6 and Dickie at 7 and make these bunnies hop like crazy at practice

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The limited over disaster continues

Another 5-0 series loss and the 3rd in recent times adding to the worrying signs of the state of cricket in SL. What is concerning most is our tactics through out these losses has remained the same. Despite it not working we continue to pack the top order with accumulators in Thranga, Chandi and if this wasnt bad enough, we have now included Thiri in the top 4. What this means is at best we wont make 300 - not with these 3 in the top 4. Yes they can bat but no, not quickly. We don't have big strickers at the end either, so what is the plan to get 300+. What's more two critical players in Anji and Guneratner are still no where to be seen. Its like a curse we just need to ride out - you cant make a proper plan when with your key players not on the park.

Been watching this young guy Sadeera and wondering why we just dont play him in the top order in all forms of cricket! Its crazy to think this guy could be just warming the bench while we watch guys like Chandi, Tharanga and Thiri stone wall at strike rates from the 80's - just makes no sense but we keep doing it.

We just havent even competed in the limited overs series. Never mind winning but not been in the game mainly because the batters have been no where. It's been all the usual stuff, either losing too many wickets up front or batting too slow up front and not having the fire power for a strong finish.

Not sure where to from here and I presume it cannot get any lower which will force the selectors to take a radical step and start building for the future with players, who if they come good, will allow us to win. Cannot stress the importance of this last point. There is no point building a team with the top order stacked with 80's style players, the best they will do is set up a 280 score which most opponents will chase down, especially with our attack. We need to set up a batting order for 300+ scores. May not come off now but if it does, we could have a chance to compete.

Fingers crossed for the boys to get out of Pakistan and get ready for India!

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