Sri Lanka’s mystery spinner Maheesh Theekshana reckons not having Wanindu Hasaranga is a challenge for them in the ongoing World Cup 2023. Sri Lanka suffered a seven-wicket loss against Afghanistan at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, Pune on Monday.
Meanwhile, Hasaranga was ruled out of the ODI showpiece due to a hamstring injury and he recently had surgery. Hasaranga has an impressive record as he has scalped 67 wickets in 48 ODI matches at an average of 28.78 and his services are deeply missed by the team.
“Actually, it is a challenge because he is the main wicket-taking bowler we had. So, then we both had a partnership that some days I had to be the strike bowler, some days he would be the strike bowler. The other guy will keep pressure on the batsman.
“So, with our combination right now, there’s only one spinner we can play, the wickets are really good. So, there’s no turning. So, it’s actually a good challenge for me and I think it’s an opportunity for me as well,” Theekshana was quoted as saying in the post-match press conference.
On the other hand, Sri Lanka was skittled out for 241 runs against Afghanistan as their batters could not convert their scores into substantial contributions.
Afghanistan was able to chase down the score after fifties from Rahmat Shah, Hasmatullah Shahidi, and Azmatullah Omarzai as all of them showed maturity.
Meanwhile, Maheesh Theekshana went wicketless and conceded 55 runs in his quota of 10 overs and he didn’t get any help from the surface. The mystery spinner added they could not create enough pressure in the middle overs after getting two early wickets.
“When we had 242 runs, we tried to get wickets. Dilshan Madhushanka took the first wicket for us. However, we struggled to apply the pressure we intended to exert on the opposition,” he added.
Sri Lanka will next take on hosts India at the Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai on Thursday.