Cook takes potshot at Lanka for preferring personal glory over team
Judging by the scenes at Lord's, the rest of this series is going be played out by two teams with precious little good feeling left for one another.cricket Updated: Jul 05, 2011 00:07 IST
Judging by the scenes at Lord's, the rest of this series is going be played out by two teams with precious little good feeling left for one another. A day that began with the announcement that Stuart Broad had been fined half of his match fee from the previous game at Headingley, after making "unacceptable and offensive" remarks at the umpire Billy Bowden, ended with Alastair Cook criticising the Sri Lankan team for the way in which they finished off their victory at Lord's.
Angelo Mathews dead-batted 17 deliveries as Sri Lanka closed in on their target, turning down easy singles to allow his partner, the 21-year-old Dinesh Chandimal, a chance to make a century.
Cook was obviously irked by what he seemed to take as an insult to his team. "They're perfectly entitled to do it if they want," he said. "But you never know, the cricketing Gods might look down at that in a bit of disgust." Never mind the "cricketing Gods", disgust was clearly what England were feeling when Chandimal finally completed his wonderful 100 by crashing a six over long-on. While he leapt into Mathews' arms, the England team stood around the field with their hands on their hips, 11 teapots with steam coming out of their spouts.
The irony of the situation was that the Sri Lankans were just angry as the English. On the away balcony Mathews' captain, Tilakaratne Dilshan, and the other senior players were apoplectic at the way he was batting, hopping up and down and shouting in frustration. When Mathews came in his team needed 17 runs from 44 balls, with Chandimal 13 away from his century.
But Mathews' insistence on playing for his partner almost managed to turn the match into something more tense.