Colombo:Sri Lanka's new spin sensation Ajantha Mendis, who returned home said he somehow felt that he would win the International Cricket Council's(ICC) award for the emerging player of the year.
Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) at an official function welcomed Mendis who made a sensational entry into the international cricket with 26 wickets in his debut Test series against India with an average of 18.38 a piece.
He has also bagged 20 wickets with an average of 10.25 per wicket in eight one-day internationals during the voting period.
"I had this feeling that I stood a good chance of winning the award due to my successful performance during the Indian tour," a jubilant Mendis told reporters here at the SLC headquarters.
The right-arm off-spinner said he believed in winning the prestigious award despite him being clubbed with with India's Ishant Sharma, England's Stuart Broad and South Africa's Morne Morkel.
Mendis, however warned Sri Lankan fans not to entertain unreasonable expectations from him.
"Even the spinning greats such as Murali have their off days, so I will not be an exception to do big things every time I get the chance to bowl," Mendis said, adding that he would continue to work hard to keep his sensational performance going in the international arena.
Mendis was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant from his position of a gunner immediately after he bowled Sri Lanka to win the Asia Cup in Pakistan.
The Sri Lankan cricket team won the "Spirit of Cricket Award" for the second consecutive year at the annual ICC Award Ceremony.