Skipper Lasith Malinga insists Sri Lanka can cope with pressure of being World Champions
Last Updated: 19/05/14 6:24pm
Sri Lanka’s Twenty20 captain Lasith Malinga insists his side can cope with the pressure of being world champions.
Malinga, who was appointed skipper half-way through the March-April tournament before leading his country to a first world trophy in 18 years, is currently preparing for a one-off t20 against England at Lord’s on Tuesday, live on Sky Sports 2HD.
The 30-year-old replaced Dinesh Chandimal as full-time 20-over captain after clinching the title in Bangladesh, but it came in bittersweet circumstances with experienced duo Kumar Sangakkara and Mahela Jayawardene retiring from the shortest form of the game.
Sri Lanka’s only defeat at the World Cup was at the hands of England, who crashed out of the group stage, and Malinga is hopeful his sdie can take revenge despite having to replace two of their top batsmen.
“We are a really happy unit because we won the World Cup and we are confident we can handle all the pressure in Twenty20,” he said.
“We are a young side, looking forward to assessing the conditions in England as soon as possible. These conditions favour the home team but we'll look to put them under pressure.
“One over can change the match in Twenty20. Whoever makes the fewest mistakes in the 40 overs will win.”
Batsman Alex Hales became the first England player to score an international t20 century to win the game by six wickets in Chittagong back in March.
Malinga said: "We had a tough match against England in that World Cup but the past is the past.
"We're not focusing on one particular opposition player. If we give Hales a good one, we might be able to get him out early.
“But more importantly, we just want to cut down the boundaries throughout the 20 overs."
England's t20 against Sri Lanka is live on Sky Sports 2HD from 5.30pm on Tuesday.
Their subsequent five-match one-day international series, and the five-Test series, are also live on Sky Sports 2HD throughout May and June.