We are not out of the game – Mathews | Sunday Observer

We are not out of the game – Mathews

PALLEKELE, Saturday – Sri Lanka’s senior most batsman Angelo Mathews said that they were not out of the game yet and it only needed a good partnership for them to win the second cricket Test against England at the Pallekele International Stadium.

“It is evenly poised. Unfortunate I got out at a very crucial time. But we still have got a batter at the crease (Niroshan Dickwella). Then guys like Akila Dananjaya and Suranga Lakmal are no mugs with the bat. So we are not out of the game. If we get one good partnership we are in with a win,” said Mathews at the end of the day.

“We are still 75 runs away. The ball is soft and the wicket is slow. You have about another 15 overs for the new ball. We need to get as much as we can before that. The first hour will decide. cricket is a funny game,” he said.

Mathews said that the dismissal of Dimuth Karunaratne to a brilliant catch changed the game.

“It was one of those wickets where you can get a good ball any given time. You have to look to score runs all the time and one good ball will come your way. You will definitely nick it or you will get out. It is a wicket where there is lot of assistance for the spinners credit to England for bowling so well,” said Mathews.

“They didn’t give too many loose balls. We had to work extremely hard to score runs. Dimuth was superb today with the bat and it was extremely unfortunate that he had to fall for a brilliant catch. That changed the game. He was the batsman in form. Had we got a bigger partnership we would have been in a commanding position.”

Keaton Jennings explaining the stunning catch he parried for wicket-keeper Ben Foakes to dismiss Karunaratne said: “I think at the time you get a feeling of what the batter is looking to do, you try to watch his movements and match your movements to where he is trying to hit the ball: generally try and get in the way. I saw him go down to paddle and just set off running. He got a little too much bat on it and it ended up at me. I’d love to say I parried it to Foaksey but I genuinely tried to catch it. It hit me really hard and went straight off to Foakesy.”

“Depends on who is sweeping, sometimes you put your head down and hope it doesn’t hit you. At times you see the shot they’re playing and generally get your body in the way, keep a low position. That’s what Sri Lankans do quite well, they stay quite low and do catch quite a few low, sharp catches like Jos (Buttler) at Galle. Being 6ft 4in I can learn from that, just to keep my hands nice and low.” Commenting on the game situation Jennings said: “It’s by no stretch game over. Cricket just doesn’t work like that. We need to come out tomorrow and be patient with our areas.’’