After VVS Laxman it was Gautam Gambhir who made a good fist of playing the two lethal spinners in the first Test at Colombo. He was certainly helped by the fact that he faced the quick men first up and had some time to settle down before he faced Muralitharan and Mendis.
"I think he bowled well, but it's not that he is unplayable," said Gambhir of Mendis. "It's about what you want to do rather than what the opposition is doing. It's about knowing your strengths. It's just one of those bad Tests. We will look to be more positive against Mendis and Murali."
While attention has centred around Mendis it was Murali who did the most damage picking up 11 wickets. "Murali is a legend. Both are quality spinners and they need to be milked more patiently," said Gambhir. "They were hardly giving you loose deliveries, it's a great challenge."
Gambhir also suggested that Indians needed to be mentally strong. "That's what international cricket is about. It's about being mentally very strong. Technically everyone knows what mistakes he makes, it's about your temperament, your mental toughness which takes you through."
The Indian team had an extended fielding session, spending more than two hours in training but could not have a bat as the wicket was soggy from overnight rain. Through it they appeared energetic and cheerful, and were doing their best to look forward in optimism. "There are two more Tests to go. The guys are really positive," said Gambhir. "We are 0-1 down but haven't lost the series. With the kind of batting and bowling lineup we have we can easily win the Test series."
Of course, this is not to say that the team has not looked back at the Test to identify mistakes. "Everyone must have analysed his game and everyone learns from mistakes and we have to give a much better show and try and win the Test match because that is what is most important," said Gambhir. "What has gone is history, you can't do anything. We need to think we can beat Sri Lanka."