Sri Lanka fielding woes highlighted in LPL
The COVID-19 Pandemic kept cricketers indoors for months with their daily training schedules cut off, and most of them looked rusty during on the field in the Lanka Premier League.
But 12 dropped catches in four matches on top of several fumbles and misfielding which went for boundaries means Sri Lanka Cricket coaching staff will be itching to work with them on this aspect, which was what the coaches were discussing for a while when referring to Sri Lankan cricketers.
The batting has been entertaining with the short boundaries, and several National players like Avishka Fernando (92n.o.), Kusal Perera (87), Dinesh Chandimal (80),Dasun Shanaka (73), together with international stars Andre Russel and Shahid Afridi, provided glimpses of what will be unveiled in the coming days.
On the other hand, bowling and fielding could not live up to expectations, where several batsmen who went on to make big scores were helped by dropped chances. Kusal Mendis and Naveen Ul Haq have dropped three chances each during the tournament so far. The bowling too has not been up to the mark yet, apart from a few impressive overs, while questionable wide and no ball deliveries by spinners raised many eyebrows during the first three days of the tournament.
In a press release SLC stated the distance to the boundary will be 70 yards (64m), but it was definitely shorter than that. During Saturday’s game a scoop for six by Niroshan Dickwella was just 61m, though it was well within international standards of 65 yards.
After four matches, Colombo Kings top the points table with 4 points after registering two wins, and have the best net run rate of 1.36, while Galle Gladiators who lost both their matches, are lagging in the bottom without points. Kandy Tuskers too are yet to score any points after losing both games.
The tournament had its fair share of injury worries,with several players getting injured during first four matches. Kandy Tuskers paceman Irfan Pathan walked off after the first game and did not feature in the second. Dambulla Viiking opener Oshada Fernando slipped and had a nasty fall and was carried off on Saturday, and has ruled out of the rest of the tournament, increasing worries for Sri Lanka ahead of their Test tour to South Africa next month. Kusal Mendis walked off after an injury to the webbing of his left hand in Kandy Tuskers second game, but he later batted without much problem.
Two International players - Zimbabwe batsman Brendon Taylor and Indian paceman Munaf Patel - have completed their quarantine and will be available for Kandy Tuskers selection today.
After a break yesterday, LPL will resume with a double-header today when two unbeaten teams Jaffna Stallions and Dambulla Viiking clash at 3.30 p.m. followed by two teams without a win so far, Kandy Tuskers taking on Galle Gladiators.