After losing the T20Is by 2-1, the Sri Lankan team faces India in the three-match ODI series starting on January 10 at Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati. In the pre-match press conference, captain Dasun Shanaka highlighted the level of difficulty of facing India in their backyard and said that Sri Lanka need to play competitive cricket.
After losing the opening T20I by two runs, Sri Lanka made a great comeback in the second game with a 16-run victory. But in the third and decisive game, the traveling side was bowled out on just 137 runs while chasing a 229-run target. Shanaka pointed out that only South Africa won in India in the recent times and Sri Lanka need to be more competitive when facing a giant like India.
“None of the teams in recent past except for South Africa have won in India. Even we gave a good fight in Mumbai. But they came stronger, we need to play competitive cricket. It’s an important tournament for all Sri Lankans because the World Cup is going to be held here in India, so looking forward to this series,” Shanaka said in the pre-match conference on January 9.
It’s very important to play well in India: Dasun Shanaka
With the One-Day World Cup 2023 scheduled in India, Shanaka pointed out the upcoming ODIs will be very important for the preparations. Sri Lanka rank eighth in the current ICC ODI Team’s chart and are yet to qualify for the mega event. However, the Asian champions will be playing in familiar conditions and Shanaka added that the players are well aware of the importance of playing in India.
“It’s a very good preparation, the conditions would be similar. The boys are ready for that, they know the importance of this tournament. Before coming here, I really wanted to do well, practised more, it’s very important to play well in India,” Shanaka added.