Sri Lankan bowling allrounder Chamika Karunaratne believes comparisons cannot be drawn between his side losing to Afghanistan in the Asia Cup opener and going on to win the tournament and being crushed by Namibia and hoping to win the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia.
The 26-year-old right-am pace bowler felt the ground conditions in Australia and the weather made the T20 World Cup a different cup of tea altogether, which had no comparison with the Asia Cup.
Sri Lanka, after losing the opening match to Afghanistan in the Asia Cup in the UAE recently went on to lift the trophy defeating Pakistan in the final.
In response to a question about having an inauspicious start in the Asia Cup and going on to win the tournament and whether they would be able to script a similar fairy-tale story in Australia, Karunaratne said, “The Asia Cup we lost to Afghanistan in the first match, and after that, we won all the matches. But we aren’t thinking the same way because the Asia Cup is history. Now it’s like we have to think about the World Cup. It’s not the Asia Cup — and different places, conditions, and countries.
“The ground (here) is also so different. Even one side is 57 (meters); one side is 55, and long straight, straight. So many things are different, so we have to plan and we have to play our game because we have a young side that we can — as players have so much energy and so much fit players,” Karunaratne was quoted as saying by ICC.
The allrounder said, despite the early setback of losing the Group A First Round match to Namibia by 55 runs here on Sunday, Sri Lanka will be banking on its young players to stage a strong comeback.
“We have to take that advantage (young players), and we have to come back really strong and we have to play our game in a better way.”
Asked about his views on the UAE team, whom Sri Lanka meet next on Tuesday, Karunaratne said, “Yeah, the UAE, the whole team is really good. You see yesterday how Namibia played the match (against Sri Lanka), so we have to plan really well for the UAE team and we have to play good cricket tomorrow. Yesterday (Sunday) we lost the match, and so right now, somehow we have to win — no matter what, we have to win the next two matches. I think the boys all know that. We are definitely going to put more than 100 percent in the next two matches.
“We are looking at the players that we have right now. All four teams are playing good cricket. Even the last match yesterday, UAE versus the Netherlands finished in the last ball. We don’t know what can happen, and because this game is always exciting and a bunch of funny things. Anything can happen, so we’ll see,” he added.