Hamstring injury rules Mathews out of T20I series | Sunday Observer

Hamstring injury rules Mathews out of T20I series

Kusal Perera returned to form with a blistering  77 off 37 balls.
Kusal Perera returned to form with a blistering 77 off 37 balls.

INDORE, Saturday - Sri Lankan all-rounder Angelo Mathews has been ruled out of the T20I series against India after suffering a hamstring injury in the second T20I at the Holkar stadium in Indore.

When he was on his way to bowl the third ball of the 12th over of Indian innings, the all-rounder lost his run-up and held his hamstring in pain. He was taken off the field by the Lankan physio immediately and spinner Akila Dananjaya completed the over.

Chasing a daunting 261 to win, Sri Lanka were without one of their main batsmen as Mathews never walked out to bat. In the post-match presentation, Sri Lankan skipper Thisara Perera confirmed that the 30-year-old has been ruled out of the series due to the hamstring injury he suffered earlier in the match.

Mathews’s absence from the third T20I might not make any difference as the series has already been sealed by Rohit Sharma and co. But, his injury will give his team some headache as the right-arm medium pacer has a history of suffering hamstring injuries and just returned to bowling during the ODI series against India. Even when the Indian batsmen were scoring at 13 runs per over, Mathews was the only bowler who managed to keep Rohit Sharma, who scored a 43-ball 118, at bay as he conceded just 16 runs in his 2.2 overs at an economy of below seven on a track that was a graveyard for the bowlers.


Meanwhile explosive Sri Lanka batsman Kusal Perera has admitted that his team had difficulty in picking Indian spin duo of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal during their 88-run loss in the second T20I here.

Sri Lanka were cruising at one stage, reaching 145 for one in chase of 261 but chinaman Yadav picked three wickets in a single over to diffuse their challenge.

Chahal took four wickets, including that of opener Upal Tharanga (47), as India hammered Sri Lanka by 88 runs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.

“They are bowling really well and generally the wrist- spinners with their variations are hard to pick. But this wicket offered very little for the bowlers and was excellent for batting and we could have done better,” Perera said at the post match press conference.

“We tried to capitalize with fours and sixes. We didn’t want too many dot balls. We tried to hit out and ended up losing too many wickets,” added the 27-year-old, who top scored for the visitors with his 37-ball 77. Yadav dismissed Kusal, captain Thisara Perera and Asela Gunaratne in the 15th over to end Sri Lankan hopes.

“Kuldeep took three wickets in an over. The momentum went away from us at that moment and we never recovered,” Perera lamented.

Asked if they made a mistake by asking India to bat first, Perera defended the decision.

“We have to back our strengths. We have good batsmen, but Rohit and KL Rahul were brilliant with that partnership. We tried to back ourselves and play to our best when batting, but it didn’t go our way,” he said.

“Winning and losing are part of the game. We try to learn from what we did wrong. As a team we are trying to improve. We have to think of our batting and how we can do things better.”

Talking about his own explosive innings on comeback, Perera said, “I backed myself. It was very pleasing to get going after a long injury lay off. I believe in my ability. However, your individual performances don’t matter and you have to think of the team winning and that’s what counts.”