Sri Lanka cricket teams outgoing manager has made the bold statement that the current captain of the national team — Angelo Mathews — can surpass Sachin Tendulkar in number of Test centuries in his career, going by the fine form Mathews has struck over the recent couple of years.
“From the time he (Angelo Mathews) captained in the Bangladesh series through to the end of the 2015 World Cup, it was marvellous to see a young man really filling the shoes he was intended to fill,” Michael de Zoysa was quoted as saying by Sportskeeda. “With Mahela (Jayawardene) not there and once Sangakkara goes, he will have to do it on his own, then we will really see what he is really made of.”
His praise was Mathews was lavish and he went on to wrongly point out that Mathews has the second best average in Test cricket after Sir Donald Bradman. “He can probably surpass Tendulkar’s number of Test centuries if he keeps going. He is already no. 2 to (Don) Bradman and he will probably retain that position in batting average terms. There is so much more he can offer for Sri Lanka,” de Zoysa said.
Note: Mathew’s average of 51.50 though impressive, is lesser than that of batsmen like Jacques Kallis, Kumar Sangakkara, Rahul Dravid, Herbert Sutcliffe, Tendulkar and AB de Villiers among others.
De Zoysa didn’t sound convinced about the future of Sri Lankan bowling though he was very optimistic about the batting. “The batting is going to be fairly sound. Obviously you will miss Mahela; no way you won’t miss a guy who has scored 18,000 runs, but someone has to step up, Thirimanne is definitely going to be one of the players for the future. I am very confident Chandimal will do so too when he is confident of a place in the side. Others who should come through are Dimuth Karunaratne, Kaushal Silva has to be little bit more positive he has tremendous temperament and good technique,” he said.
About the bowling he said, “Eranga and Prasad have a lot of potential so too does Chameera but we will have to see whether he is fit enough for Test cricket. Ten overs in ODI cricket is quite a different game against 20-25 overs in a Test match.”
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