Cricket: Sri Lanka skipper Sangakkara hails bowlers

Chief Regulatory Officer at CSE Renuke Wijayawardhane presenting the listing certificate to Executive Chairperson at Renuka Hotels Shibani Thambiayah

JOHANNESBURG, September 17, 2009 (AFP) – Sri Lanka skipper Kumar Sangakkara hailed his bowlers Thursday ahead of the ICC 2009 Champions Trophy in South Africa. “We are confident although our recent wins are not going to count for anything. All the teams here are professional units and whether they played recently or not won’t matter.”

The closest Sri Lanka came to winning the competition was sharing the trophy with India in 2000 after two attempts to complete the Colombo final were washed out. Sri Lanka face the hosts at Centurion Park on September 22 in the opening match of the 50-over mini-World Cup which was last staged three years ago and won by Australia.

“Fast bowling is now one of our main strengths. Some of my team can bowl at 140 km/h and they have accuracy and firepower,” boasted Sangakkara at a media conference here.

“Coupled with our spinners Muttiah Muralitharan and Ajantha Mendis, it is an exciting time for Sri Lankan cricket,” he said, referring to a team ranked third in the world behind South Africa and India.

Pace trio Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara Thilan Thushara have been among the wickets in recent matches as Sri Lanka