Mathews: Loss was embarrassing and depressing


Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews has gone from disappointed to embarrassed over his side's efforts in the ODI series against India, ruing some very loose bowling after losing the fourth game in a row.

India took a four nil lead after Rohit Sharma's record-smashing 264 runs took them to 404 for five. Sri Lanka responded with 251 all out, with Mathews making 75 runs in vain. He was also the only bowler to go at less than seven to the over.

Mathews lamented after the game: "It's embarrassing because we were not even competitive enough with the Indians in the last four games.

"Once again we were poor in the field. We let go of Rohit and it cost us the game. You can't let go of a brilliant player like that, and he showed us today how things need to be done when batting."

The bowling in the latter half of the innings was abysmal, with the Sri Lankan bowlers pitching it short, wide, or at half volley range, and Rohit had little trouble getting it away. They conceded 233 runs in 18 overs.

The skipper added: "In the second 25 overs they scored somewhere close to 270 runs and that is unacceptable. That is where the match slipped away. Four-hundred is a humongous target.
"Our bowlers didn't have any answers for their batting. Nothing can be taken away from Rohit's brilliant knock, but we could have had more plans and executed them properly.

"You need to try and bluff. You can't bowl the same length and line for three or four overs – or even one over for that matter – on tracks like these.

"We haven't played this badly in the last six-eight months, when we've competed against top teams. We all know that in India it is tough, and we need to be more competitive to win against India."

Mathews also denied that the players were performing badly due to a lack of concern or hard work, saying they had moved past being upset over the hasty arrangement of the trip, and were trying hard, but failing to make it pay in the middle.

He said: "I think the intensity level has been good. In the past two games it has picked up a little bit. But I think the pressure has got to us. When we play against a team like India in India, there is pressure, and it is tough.

"We need to try and be a bit more positive and aggressive on the field – both the bowlers and also the fielders. Try and get that one run out, change the game, and grab that half chance.

"Our work ethic has been really good in the past week or so. It's not about the work – it's about executing on the field."