We squandered winning opportunities: Mahela

Last Updated: Tue, Aug 07, 2012 04:55 hrs

It was a great game of cricket on Saturday night, but sadly India once again emerged winners. They finished with a 4-1 series win that will no doubt be very satisfying for them after a long break. It should certainly give them confidence ahead of a new long season.

While we feel disappointed, believing that we squandered winning opportunities by making too many mistakes, we also have to give credit to India for playing best cricket of the series. They won the key moments and several of their players were outstanding.

Virat Kohli, of course, has been a thorn in our side during the past year and he was exceptional. He's in the best form of his life and was one of the key reasons why India won. It's very exciting from an Indian perspective, that they have some exceptional young talent coming through the ranks.

The outstanding performers for India were Gautam Gambhir, MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina. The face that they are all batsmen highlights the central issue we faced: trying to take wickets and control the run-rate. Our bowling attack really had a tough time.

From our perspective, though, there were some positives. I was really pleased and excited to see Lahiru Thirimanne and Jeevan Mendis play so positively. They are both inexperienced but they looked at ease in international cricket. If they continue developing then we do have a couple of fine players for the future.

As mentioned it was tough for the bowlers, but I thought Lasith (Malinga) showed a lot of spirit under pressure. Without his normal partner, Nuwan Kulasekara, he had to shoulder responsibility and bowl in all the difficult periods. He kept running in and took wickets. Nuwan Pradeep also some some promise in the final two games running in hard and bowling several great deliveries.

Today we have a chance to finish the series with something to cheer about. The series might have been lost but we have a World T20 just around the corner and this is definitely a very important game for both sides.

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