India vs Sri Lanka: Visitors' bowling coach says 'job not finished' after putting hosts under pressure on Day 1

Ratnayake further said Sri Lanka were surprised to see the Eden green top.

PTI, Nov,16 2017

Kolkata: Leaving India gasping for breath on the opening day of the first Test, Sri Lanka bowling coach Rumesh Ratnayake on Thursday said it is just the beginning and their job is far from over.

Sri Lanka pacer Suranga Lakmal wrecked the high-profile Indian top-order in overcast conditions to leave the hosts reeling at 17/3 on a rain-affected day one of the first Test at Eden Gardens.

Sri Lanka's Suranga Lakmal, celebrates with teammates the dismissal of India's Lokesh Rahul. AP

Sri Lanka's Suranga Lakmal, celebrates with teammates the dismissal of India's Lokesh Rahul. AP

"We had nothing to lose when we came here so our boys were ready for the challenge," Ratnayake told at the post- match news conference.

"It was one of the finest I've seen for a long time. The wicket was receptive and very helpful. We knew that it would seam but the job is not finished, it only started."

Asked what would be a par score for them, Ratnayake said: "They might say 250, we might say 200. It may differ depending on the teams."

Lakmal's sensational spell, in which he struck thrice without conceding a run in six overs, saw him remove opener Lokesh Rahul on the first ball of the match after play began three and a half hours late due to wet conditions.

His other two victims were Shikhar Dhawan (8), who dragged one on to his stumps after playing a loose shot in testing conditions, and India captain Virat Kohli (0), who was trapped in front after the ball came in sharply.

"I had a simple advice to keep the ball up to push batsmen back as much as possible. As we pitched up the vulnerability was more. Our tactics in normal wicket would be different and on this wicket it was totally different," he said referring to the overcast conditions that made the task easier for their seamers.

Ratnayake further said Sri Lanka were surprised to see the Eden green top.

"Certainly it was a good toss to win. Hope it might last about one and half days or more. I would think it would last for two days at least. The surface is grassy. It is in recent times a surprise."

Lakmal, however, lacked support at the other end with Lahiru Gamage not able to exert enough pressure.

"It was a matter of getting his rhythm right and the timing was more important. As much as you need timing in batting, in bowling also you need timing and don't want to rush through so the chances of hitting the right place becomes more," he said.

Ratnayake said they missed Nuwan Pradeep who missed out due to an injury.

"He's not there we can't help but we certainly do miss him. We have to look at the combination that we have."

Relishing the condition, the Lankan bowling coach said: "I would love it as a fast bowling coach. A grassy pitch gives 50-50 chance for both the teams, although it might be a nightmare for the batsmen."

Published Date: Nov 16, 2017 | Updated Date: Nov 16, 2017




Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4969 124
2 South Africa 3888 111
3 Australia 4174 104
4 New Zealand 3489 100
5 England 4829 99
6 Sri Lanka 4058 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 South Africa 6386 120
2 India 6680 119
3 England 6320 115
4 New Zealand 6404 114
5 Australia 6012 113
6 Pakistan 4811 96
Rank Team Points Rating
1 New Zealand 2262 126
2 Pakistan 2843 124
3 India 3385 121
4 England 2029 119
5 West Indies 2538 115
6 South Africa 2238 112