Today is obviously a make or break day for us. We have competed well in the series and should probably have been 2-1 up going into the final two games. The uncomfortable reality for us is that we are trailing 1-2 with our backs to the wall.
To make matters worse we have lost two of our key players. Sanga has been a rock for us and has been in superb form during the past month or so and is our highest run scorer in all formats during the past couple of years. Losing him for four to six weeks is a real blow.
He showed his value in Saturday’s game. Though his right hand was fractured pretty early in the innings, he was determined to bat through the pain. He adjusted his game slightly and worked the ball around rather than going for the big shots. It was really a courageous knock.
Nuwan (Kulasekara), meanwhile, is massively underrated and his groin injury in Hambantota left us with a big gap to fill in. We rely heavily on him with the new ball and also, importantly, in the Powerplays. Not having him at my disposal leaves us with a bit of a headache.
There is no point though in us feeling sorry for ourselves. We have a game to win and still have some very talented cricketers in our team. What I want to see today is the fighting spirit that can lift us higher and help us level the series.
We have to take positives from the fact that we have battled India so close in both the games that we lost to them. I thought we should have won after Lasith’s double-wicket over to dismiss Dhoni and Rohit (Sharma). We had them under real pressure, but sadly we made a couple of really costly errors.
In terms of our batting, it was obviously disappointing to lose those early wickets and that was a big setback. But we battled back. Aside from Sanga, Angelo was terrific and Jeevan (Mendis) was very impressive having been brought into the side.
Hopefully today the openers and top order will fire.
Professional Management Group