Despite all the unrest going on around the Sri Lanka camp regarding the security concerns of the last of three T-20Is in Lahore, Sri Lanka’s newly appointed T20 captain Thisara Perera has expressed his contentment regarding the security in Pakistan. It should be noted that Perera was with the world XI thay toured Pakistan for a three math T-20 earlier this year. While as many as 40 Sri Lankan contracted cricketers signed a letter indicating their reluctance to play the last game of the ongoing bilateral tour in Lahore, Perera was the only man to not to sign the letter.
Perera was selected the captain after seven senior cricketers, including T-20 captain Upul Tharanga, Lasith Malinga ruling themselves out for security concerns. They both had previous requested the Sri Lankan sports minister to select different squads for both legs of the series. But the request was turned down and the board selected only one squad for the whole series. Because of his, Tharanga & Co. will miss the whole series.
Perera said, “I was there in Lahore with the World XI last month and I was very impressed with the security that was given to the players. We were given security that is given to a Head of State. We were there for six days and were very impressed with the arrangements. Captaining my country is a huge honour for me. It’s a new challenge as well and I am looking forward to the opportunity”.
Despite being whitewashed 5-9 in the ODI series, Perera is confident of a fightback in the shortest format of the game, “Every team goes through tough times. It is part and parcel of cricket. As captain I have given the players confidence and told them not to be selfish but to give all what they’ve got for the team. The selectors also have echoed same sentiments.”
Perera concluded by talking about the series being an opportunity for the younger or the second string players, “There are some very good talents in this team. Hopefully we will do something special in this series. We will challenge Pakistan. We have told everyone to play without fear of failure. It doesn’t matter if you fail after giving 100 percent. Everyone knows this is a good opportunity and if someone does well, that will be a huge moment in his career.”
First T-20 will be played today (October 26) with the 2nd one tomorrow (October 27). Both will be olayed at Sharjah. The last match, to be played at Lahore, will commence of October 29th.