London:Sri Lanka captain Kumar Sangakkara described teammate Mahela Jayawardene as "brilliant" after the former captain smashed 78 in his team's narrow nine-run win over Ireland in the World Twenty20 on Sunday.
"Mahela was brilliant. He's been doing this for years and he was nearly at his best today," said Sangakkara whose team clinched a second win in two matches in the Super Eights to move to the brink of the semi-finals.
"We had to win today but we didn't get a great start. The bowling was spot on. There are a few things to brush up on.
"They had some good partnerships. We lack a little intensity and there are some things to think about going forward."
Jayawardene was happy to get decent time in the middle after arriving at the wicket with his team 14-2.
"We have got used to having good starts but today I got the chance to bat for a period of time to help get us through," said Jayawardene.
"We played some good cricket today. We just need to brush up on a few things."
Ireland captain William Porterfield believes with more experience his side could have won.
"We bowled really well to restrict to them to 144. We got a decent start with the bat but just couldn't pull through," he said.
"We are learning with every game. With more experience we could have pulled through."