Sri Lankan camp is in a state of shock after minnows Namibia stunned them by 55 runs in the T20 World Cup opener on Sunday. Following the loss, the Lankan skipper has said that it’s a worrisome sign for the team.
Speaking at the post-match press conference, Shanaka said, “We didn’t execute our plans well. I think we went for the yorkers and we didn’t execute with low full tosses and half volleys. I think that’s where it went wrong. I think if they had stuck to that hard length, wicket-to-wicket, like the Namibian bowlers did really, really well, it should have been different.”
After being put into bat first, Namibia posted 163 for 7 in 20 overs. With 93 for 6 in 14.2 overs, Namibia were in deep trouble. Jan Frylinck (44 off 28b; 4×4) and JJ Smit (31 not out off 16b; 2×4, 2×6) put on a 70-run stand for the seventh wickets in just 34 balls. The partnership proved to be a match-winning one.
Lanka will now need to avoid any further slip-ups against Netherlands and United Arab Emirates to progress, and could even then see their fortunes come down to run rate permutations.
Interestingly, Sri Lanka have come into the World Cup after winning Asia Cup in UAE. On the other side, Namibia still made it through to the Super 12 stage in 2021, and captain Gerhard Erasmus said his side has taken great confidence from that experience at the top level.
Now Sri Lanka will face UAE and Namibia will lock horns with the Netherlands on Tuesday.