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Sunday, 20 March 2011





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Hope Murali will be fully fit - Sangakkara

CRICKET: Sri Lankan captain Kumar Sangakkara commended the effort of Muttiah Muralitharan in their ICC 2011 Cricket World Cup Group ‘A’ fixture against New Zealand played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Friday.

The legendary off spinner snapped up four wickets for 25 runs from eight overs to skittle out New Zealand for just 153 runs from 35 overs after they were set a victory target of 266 runs.

Man of the Match Sangakkara stated that it was a fantastic effort from Muralitharan who mesmerized the New Zealand batsmen throughout the innings despite nursing an injury.

“We know we are well on our way, Muralitharan the legend, bowling on one leg, bowled so well. We have a few days before the next game, and we hope he will be fully fit for the quarterfinals. We want to make sure he enjoys himself, and we want him to bowl and take wickets” added Sangakkara.

The Sri Lankan captain further noted that New Zealand had got off to a good start and it was important for the team to pick up a couple of early wickets. He said that the bowlers worked hard from the start and struck at vital stages to turn the game in their favour.

Sangakkara further noted that it was a great team effort that eventually helped them to pull off a convincing victory despite performing under the scorching heat which the players have been experiencing since they arrived in Mumbai.

“It was quite hot there, we practiced two days in the heat and took a toll but we enjoyed it. When we won the toss, we knew the first 10 to 15 overs were going to be difficult, so we just rotated the strike and kept wickets for the end”.

“There was more dew than we expected, something to keep in mind, but there is a long way to go before we can think of coming back here” added Sangakkara. Meanwhile New Zealand stand in captain Ross Taylor stated that it was disappointing effort from the team having started the game with a great amount of confidence.

“We came with hopes of taking momentum into the quarterfinals but the way Kumar Sangakkara, played took us out of the game. We thought the 3rd umpire decision was out, but it wasn’t and we had to get on with it”.

“We were with the rate the whole way, but Muralitharan bowled really well and we kept losing wickets at vital stages. The injured guys are getting better every day and hopefully will be around for the next game” added Taylor.



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