Despite Losses vs India, Mahela Jayawardene Says World Cup Preparation On Track

Sri Lanka have lost three straight ODIs against India but Mahela Jayawardene is optimistic about his team's chances in next year's ICC World Cup.

Updated: November 12, 2014 21:17 IST
  • Total Shares
Mahela Jayawardene training Eden
Heading the right way? Mahela Jayawardene during a training session ahead of the 4th ODI against India.


Kolkata: Sri Lanka might have surrendered the five-match ODI series against India in the third game itself but former captain Mahela Jayawardene said on Wednesday that there was nothing to worry about their World Cup preparation as things are on track. (In pics: World Cup trophy goes skydiving)

"When you go into a big tournament you have to have that hunger to win. In our camp we have that. Our guys tend to rise when it matters. As long as the focus and intent is there I think we'll get very far," Jayawardene told reporters on the eve of their penultimate ODI of the series at Eden Gardens. (4th ODI preview: Kohli's men look to go for the kill)

"This is the build up, yes we would have few hiccups and not a concern. Things are right on track." (Also read: Will Rohit Sharma be India's 'X' factor in World Cup?)

"I think we have the knack of rising to the occasion in big tournaments and stand up to the pressure. Not just me if you see how Lasith (Malinga) and Nuwan Kulasekara bowled those last four five overs," he said referring to their World T20 final win against India in Bangladesh.

The senior pro further recalled their successive runners-up finishes in the World Cup.

"No one gave us an opportunity to come out of that group in 2007 in the West Indies. In the end, India went out and we went all the way.

"Yes we're one of the favourites in the last edition because of the home conditions but we handled the pressure and reached the final."

Jayawardene further said they have been very successful this time and claimed their winning percentage was about 80 per cent.

"If you take this year leading up to the World Cup we have been pretty consistent home and away so we just need to build on that. We have got seven ODIs against England at home and then seven in New Zealand to give us much better preparation leading up to the World Cup."

Jayawardene however said they would sit back and analyse things before they embark on the World Cup campaign. (India, South Africa and Australia in three-way battle for No. 1 ODI rank)

"We have had a fantastic year so far. Our winning percentage was somewhere around 80 per cent. We won the Asia Cup and then the World T20. This is International cricket."

"The only series we lost was to South Africa at home. You just can't take all the good work done away just because we lost three games badly.

"We will analyse and see what went wrong. Obviously the performance has not been up to the mark in all the three departments. We need to sit down and rethink our strategy. Once we get all our players back I think we will play good cricket.

For the latest Cricket news , Score, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and get the NDTV Cricket app for Android or iOS

Leave a comment