Mathews knows SL had a ‘lucky escape’


Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews said his team had a 'lucky escape' after they needed tailender Ajantha Mendis to score the winning runs in the first ODI against West Indies in Colombo.

Chasing 163 from 26 overs in the rain-affected game, Sri Lanka were cruising at 104 for two in the 13th over thanks to a rapid fifty from opener Tillakaratne Dilshan (59 off 32 balls).

The hosts however suffered a major collapse and found themselves still needing 11 runs to win with the final pair at the crease.

Earlier, seamer Suranga Lakmal put the home team in the ascendency when he took three quick wickets to record figures of three for 15 in five overs as the Windies managed 159 for eight in 26 overs.

Mathews said after the game: "It was a lucky escape. We made a real mess out of the game. We were cruising, and I started the collapse by playing that shot. But lesson learned.

"All the bowlers bowled their socks off. Suranga bowled magnificently. So did Mendo and Sachithra, but we were cruising. The bowlers have been batting a lot in the nets.

"In pressure situations, coming up against the best bowlers in the world, Mendo's innings was magnificent today. Danushka batted very well, unfortunately Shehan couldn't pull it through, but they are very talented players."

The second ODI of the three-match series takes place at the same ground on Wednesday.